Bill 148, labour legislation that was introduced by the former Ontario Liberal government, has been largely scrapped by Ford’s PC government and will be replaced, should it pass, with a more business-friendly legislation referred to as the “Making Ontario Open for Business Act.”
The “Making Ontario Open for Business Act” would scrap the Liberal’s two paid sick days and cancel the 10 personal emergency leave days, replacing them with up to three days for personal illness, two for bereavement and three for family responsibilities, all unpaid. If passed, the Act eliminates pay-equity for part-time and casual workers and freezes the minimum wage at $14/hour for thirty-three months. The Act will also repeal scheduling protections that gave employees the right to refuse a last minute shift without fear of reprisal and changes to the Labour Relations Act that made it easier for workers in various sectors to join a union.
If passed, the Act will also dismantle the Ontario College of Trades – the body that governs the provinces apprenticeship system – and replace it with a new model in 2019. In trades that are subject to ratios, the new model will introduce a one-to-one journeyperson to apprentice ratio.