Recent Notices to Members

ACSESS Ontario - Government backs down on proposed changes (Bill 148) to public holiday pay

Dear Ontario members,

ACSESS and other employer associations including the Canadian Federation of Independent Business and the Retail Council of Canada applaud government’s decision to back down on proposed changes to statutory holiday pay. The Ontario Liberal government is reversing a contentious piece of its new employment legislation around calculating public holiday pay, which ACSESS and other employer associations have maintained is costly and flawed. The about-face, on the eve of a provincial election campaign, has some business groups hoping there could be other changes made to the controversial Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act (Bill 148) that took effect on Jan. 1.

Late Monday, the Ontario government announced a new regulation that reinstates its old public holiday pay calculation starting with the Canada Day holiday, “following feedback and discussions with stakeholders.” The government also announced a review of the public holiday rules, with a goal to have a new system ready by 2020. “This review of the public holiday pay section of the Employment Standards Act is part of our overall commitment to address the realities of the modern workplace and create a fair society,” Labour Minister Kevin Flynn said in a statement.

Under Ontario's new formula, public holiday pay is calculated by dividing regular wages earned in the pay period before the public holiday by the number of days worked in that pay period. The calculation is based on the past two weeks. In the past, public holiday pay was calculated by taking the amount earned in the four weeks prior to the holiday, divided by 20 days.

As an interim measure the government has made a new regulation, O. Reg. 375/18, that reinstates the PHP formula that applied prior to the FWBJA for all employees. The regulation will come into effect July 1, 2018, and can be reviewed at:

Mary McIninch, B.A, LL.B (Membre du Barreau du Quebec) |

Executive Director, Government Relations/Directrice Générale
Association of Canadian Search, Employment and Staffing Services
Association Nationale des Entreprises en Recrutement et Placement de Personnel
2233 Argentia Road, Suite 100, Mississauga, Ontario L5N 2X7
T 905-826-6869 | Toll free 888-232-4962


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