Employee Rights During COVID
- Do I have to accept my employer’s decision to cut my salary by 25%?
- My employer has laid me off temporarily. Can they do this? What are my rights?
- My employer is forcing me to take my vacation time because there is not enough work. Is this legal?
- I was laid off from my job due to my employer’s concerns with my wife being a health care worker; and therefore, putting me at greater risk of contracting COVID-19 and spreading it to my colleagues.
WHAT ARE AN EMPLOYEES’ RIGHTS IN THE FACE OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC?This is a question many face in a rapidly changing legal landscape whether you are an employee or an employer. Federal and provincial resources are also continuing to evolve. There are no definitive answers, so situations must be dealt with on a case-by-case basis. HHBG Lawyers is here to navigate that uncertainty and provide clients with the most up-to-date information and resources.
SERVICE IN THE AGE OF SOCIAL DISTANCINGWe are running at full capacity, offering full services to clients through telephone and video conferencing platforms. We work with employees, unions and unionized employees. We specialize in advocating for workers who are experiencing layoffs, terminations, violations of their human rights or unsafe work environments. We are here to clarify and support. We are also proactive in our approach to supporting businesses at this time. An employee may not even know if their rights are being respected or not. By advocating for our employee clients we help employers understand and meet their legal obligations to their employees during these challenging and confusing times.
JUSTICE IS NOT ON HOLDAccess to courts may be restricted; however, the bulk of our work is done outside of the courtroom. It’s business as usual as we continue to safeguard employees’ rights. Our job is to offer guidance and support to ensure clients are being treated fairly in the workplace.
DON’T HESITATE TO ASK US FOR HELP AT THIS TIME
Our world is in crisis. Yes, we are all in this together. But even in chaos, people still have rights and obligations to comply with the law. Employers have a legal obligation to provide a safe work environment. Employees have a right to refuse unsafe work. Employees also have rights when it comes to layoffs, which may amount to a wrongful dismissal, entitling an employee to damages. Employeesaffected by Covid-19 may have the right to compensation as well.
Sites of Note
General information, including financial and economic support for both individuals and businesses, is available on the Health Canada Coronavirus Disease page, here.
The BC Centre for Disease Control manages provincial programs to help prevent the spread of disease. To read about these programs, click here.
BC has declared a provincial state of emergency, so the public must act in accordance with orders, notices and guidelines issued by the Provincial Health Officer. You can read about these guidelines here.
General information ranging from business to individuals, transportation to housing, and childcare to education, is included on this provincial site, found here.