Bill 139 was passed into law today giving new protections for temp agency workers.
Temp agency workers and the Workers’ Action Centre (WAC) have been pushing for years for legislative changes that will bring fairness for temp agency workers. WAC and community allies have sent a strong message that temp agency workers need the same rights as other workers and protection against abuses.
Their campaign for fairness for temp agency workers has had an impact! The new law is a good start in improving protection for temp agency workers. When it comes into effect in 6 months, the new legislation will:
- End fees charged to workers by temporary assignment agencies
- Reduce barriers to permanent work for temp agency workers
- Ensure public holiday pay for all temp agency workers – whether on assignment or laid-off from assignment.
- Require agencies to give workers information about assignments and employment standards rights.
- Ensure temp agency workers get the same termination and severance protections as other workers
- Require that both the agency and client company are legally responsible when a worker is penalized for trying to enforce their rights.
“Finally I will be entitled to the same rights to public holidays and termination and severance that other workers get,” says Beixi Liu, WAC member. “Ending this free ride for temp agencies is a huge victory for temp workers.”
“Ending outrageous fees for work and reducing barriers to permanent jobs: these changes are critical for temp workers’ day-to-day survival, especially in the current economic situation,” says Andrea Galindo, WAC member.
The fight for fairness for workers must continue! Not every change we were fighting for made it into the law. Workers need equal pay and working conditions regardless of being a temp agency worker, on contract or working on our own. Join the Workers' Action Centre as we use this important step forward to organize for more improvements for workers!