What is the Employment Standards Act (ESA)?

The Employment Standards Act (ESA) states the minimum standards of employment for workers in Ontario, along with the workplace rights and responsibilities of employers and employees. The Act covers most workers in Ontario, with several industry exemptions.

The Employment Standards Act for Employers

The ESA is an important resource for employers to understand what is legal in operating a business. In the Act, employers will find the minimum employment standards for:

  • Hours of Work
  • Wages and Overtime Pay
  • Minimum Wage
  • Equal Pay for Equal Work
  • Pregnancy and Parental Leave
  • Leaves of Absence
  • Public Holidays
  • Vacation Time and Pay
  • Termination and Severance of Employment
  • Temporary Layoffs
  • Liabilities
  • Complaints and Enforcement
  • Offences and Prosecution
  • Temporary Help Agencies

Understanding the ESA is critical in developing compliant contracts of employment and employee handbooks. All workers covered by the ESA must receive a copy of the Ministry of Labour’s ESA Poster, which sets out their rights under the legislation.

The Ontario labour laws may be difficult to understand, but your business must know the regulations that affect it as well as your rights and obligations as an employer. We can help you with this.

The Ontario Ministry of Labour & ESA

The Ministry of Labour is a department within the government of Ontario that is responsible for enforcing the Ontario Employment Standards Act. The Ministry of Labour Ontario enforces employment standards such as hours of work, leaves of absence, minimum wage, etc. The Ontario Labour Ministry also:

  • Educates employers and employees about their rights and obligations in the workplace
  • Investigates employment standards complaints

Are you an employer looking for help with the Employment Standards Act?

Let Employer Line’s experts answer your questions about your rights and obligations as an employer under the Ontario Employment Standards Act. If you need support ensuring your workplace is compliant with Ontario labour laws, our HR experts are here for you. Call us today at  1-888-219-8767.