Equal pay for equal work

Equal pay for equal work rules are now in effect for the province of Ontario. On April 1, the Ontario Government required that all part-time employees receive the same rate as their full-time counterparts if they’re doing the same job.

The new rules are part of the Ontario Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, which also raised the minimum wage rate to $14 an hour in the province. The legislation is a centrepiece for the government of Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne.

Ontario is currently the only jurisdiction in North America that enforces such equal pay for equal work legislation. There are exemptions, however, such as seniority or merit.

Staffing agencies employ individuals and assign them to work on a temporary basis for organizations who are clients of the staffing agency. These temporary employees are often referred to as assignment employees.

20% of Ontario’s workforce is currently temporary. With the new rules in place, workers can request for a salary review if they think that they are not receiving the same pay as a colleague who is doing the same work. The legislation protect any workers who makes such a request from their employers.

Everyone, including staffing agencies who pair temporary workers with prospective employers, are covered by these new rules.