Your MRSA Executive Board wanted to update you on recent legislative changes to the layoff provisions in Alberta’s Employment Standards Code.
On June 26, 2020, Bill 24: the COVID-19 Pandemic Response Statutes Amendment Act, 2020 became law in Alberta. This Bill amends the temporary layoff provisions in Alberta’s Employment Standards Code once again, this time to set the maximum temporary layoff period at 180 consecutive days for employees who are laid off “for reasons related to COVID-19”. It applies to employees who are already on a temporary layoff as of June 18, 2020, as well as employees who are laid off on or after that date.
At this time, the MRSA and the University have a Memorandum of Understanding in place for furloughed staff that is set to expire on Aug. 31, 2020. With the amended layoff period now extended by an additional 60 days, those staff currently on furlough may be impacted further. The Employee Relations Committee has asked Human Resources to consider how this amendment may affect our staff and the ongoing supports and benefits available to them beyond Aug. 31. CERB benefits have been extended from 16 to 24 weeks to align with this layoff extension.
We are hopeful that there will be an opportunity to recall our staff shortly, but we must consider the continuing effects the COVID-19 pandemic has on our ability/inability to work remotely. We are providing some links to resources available for reference to this concern. Again, for those working remotely we remind you to keep your receipts for any costs incurred to you personally as a result of your function.
We want to remind you that there is a Memorandum of Agreement between the MRSA and the University around workload in the current Collective Agreement (page 63). We encourage you to bring any workload issues or concerns forward to your supervisor to discuss solutions. While negotiations have been stalled during COVID, our 2019/2020 Collective Agreement remains in effect. If the workload concern has broader implications, we would encourage you to contact the MRSA office.
Please know that your MRSA Board is mindful and concerned for all our staff. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please continue to take care of yourselves and your loved ones.
Government of Alberta https://www.alberta.ca/temporary-layoffs.aspx