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Ontario Improving Day Job Protection for Military Reservists

The Ontario government is working for workers by introducing new legislation that, if passed, would ensure military reservists who are training or deployed cannot be fired while giving their time in service of their country. The change will help ease the shortage of reservists the Canadian Armed Forces is facing and recognize the tremendous sacrifice these workers make.

“Ontario’s brave men and women in the Canadian Armed Forces put their lives on hold to protect our freedom. If reservists are training or deployed their jobs should be waiting for them when they return home,” said Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development. “Reservists answer the call of duty, responding to natural disasters in Canada and conflicts abroad. It is unacceptable to ask Canadians to choose between their career and serving their country, and this stops now.”

As a result of the pandemic, the Canadian Armed Forces is experiencing shortages of reservists and troops, putting a heavier burden on current reservists and military operations.

If passed, this change would expand job-protected leave for reservists who are deployed or need to participate in military training, which often requires time off their day job. It would also make the leave available after three months of continuous employment – down from the current requirement of six months.

These measures are part of Ontario’s ambitious plan to attract the best workers from across Canada – and around the world – by making the province the best place to live, work and raise a family. This legislation also includes foundational rights for digital platform workers, a requirement for employers to disclose their electronic monitoring of employees and several red tape reductions to encourage out-of-province workers to help fill the generational labour shortage.

Quick Facts

  • Reservists are deployed on international operations and to operations within Canada. This may involve providing assistance in dealing with an emergency or its aftermath (including search and rescue operations, recovery from national disasters such as flood relief, military aid following ice storms, and aircraft crash recovery).
  • Employees on reservist leave are entitled to be reinstated to the same, or a comparable position upon their return. Their seniority and length of service credits would continue to accumulate during the leave, as they do now.
  • In the case of an operation outside Canada, the leave would include pre-deployment and post-deployment activities that are required by the Canadian Forces in connection with that operation.
  • As of March 2020, the Canadian Forces is comprised of approximately 27,000 Reserve Force members. Of these members, approximately 11,000 are living in Ontario.