Jan 17, 2020

Workplace Policies That All Businesses Need

By Peter C. Straszynski and Shreya Patel

Ontario employers are required by law to have certain workplace policies in place at work. The policies that employers must have include the following:

  1. a Workplace Health and Safety Policy;
  2. a Workplace Violence and Harassment Policy;
  3. an Accessibility Policy; and
  4. a Pay Equity Plan (employers with 10 or more employees).

Failure to have these policies in place is a violation of Ontario law and may result in the imposition of statutory fines and penalties.

While not required by statute, there are other policies that employers are well advised to have in place, including:

  1. a Drug & Alcohol Policy (updated to address medical and non-medical cannabis);
  2. a Social Media Policy;
  3. an Investigations Policy;
  4. a Human Rights Policy;
  5. an Accommodation Policy;
  6. an Absenteeism Policy; and
  7. a Privacy Policy.

These policies not only help employers monitor and govern employee conduct, but also establish internal rules and processes that, if followed, will  help employers limit potential liabilities.

Many small or start-up businesses are either unaware of their legal obligation to have policies in place or simply do not know where to start when it comes to drafting and implementing polices.

Our Employment and Labour Law group can quickly and effectively furnish employers with a complete set of policies ensuring that our clients are compliant with both Ontario law and best practices. Contact our team to help you implement policies in a cost effective manner.