Labour Code changes may impact your business

Posted by: Kaitlyn Mason on February 21, 2017

Changes to the Alberta Labour Relations Code could potentially be looming on the horizon. That's why our Policy Director, Zoe Addington, has penned this blog to help you understand what they could be, and to get your input on how your business may be affected.

Alberta has laws and codes that govern workers’ and employers’ rights and responsibilities, and they govern the rules around how unions operate and how unions can be set up in a work place.

While the majority of unionized workers in Alberta are in public sector unions (public servants, teachers, nurses), in 2015 there were over 150,000 Albertans in private sectors unions, in sectors such as manufacturing, construction, and retail and food services.

The Alberta Labour Relations Code applies to most unionized employees in the province. However, it does not cover a number of public sector employees, farm or ranch labour, household work, or industries falling under federal jurisdiction such as airlines, railways, interprovincial trucking and shipping, and telecommunications. Click here for an in-depth guide on Alberta’s current labour relations laws.

The Alberta Government has indicated that they are reviewing the Labour Code, and those potential changes could affect costs, impacting your business and employment opportunities.

At this time, the government has not disclosed the extent of possible changes or consultation opportunities.

Recent processes around the increases to minimum wage, changes to Worker’s Compensation Board and Bill 6 have all had impacts on labour in the provinces and consultations have been limited.

Prior to updating the Alberta Labour Relations Code, we are asking the provincial government to consult with businesses to help determine impact on economic activity and employment.

If you think your business may be impacted, please take five minutes to answer this short survey:

Labour Code Survey

Zoe Addington is Director of Policy, Research and Government Relations at the Calgary Chamber.