Taking a closer look at employing live-in caregivers, in Ontario. Their rights.

I received this great comment, which I didn’t want lost in my comment section and I felt was worthy of its own post.

I’m going to re-post it I’ve cleaned it up just a little bit.  
In case there are any nannies coming to this page who are being mistreated, here is some information about [their] rights. In Ontario, your work relationship is covered by the Employment Standards Act. This means that the parts of the Employment Standards Act relating to hours of work, breaks, overtime pay and termination pay apply to you. If your rights under the Employment Standards Act have been breached, you can file a claim for compensation.

For more information about the employment standards act, check out this website: http://www.labour.gov.on.ca/english/es/.

For information about filing a claim; http://www.labour.gov.on.ca/english/es/pubs/claim/index.php

If you think your human rights have been violated, for example, you were terminated or harassed because you became pregnant or took a maternity leave or you were harassed or terminated because of a disability, you may have recourse under the human rights code.

For information about filing a human rights claim in Ontario, check http://www.hrlsc.on.ca. if you call the number for the hrlsc you can call the intake line and get a sense of what assistance the hrlsc might be able to provide for you. Services can range from legal advise to representation at a mediation session or at a hearing.

I think the one thing that needs to be perfectly clear here is that in Canada, especially here in Ontario, no employee deserves to be treated poorly, and I think there is some misinformation about employing live-in caregivers as a result of the stories about how poorly they are treated in other countries, like Hong Kong and Saudi Arabia.  But let’s remember that as Canadians, we are better than that and respect that there are people coming to Canada to work and raise our children and look after the sick and the aged.  They deserve to be treated as any other employee would and as you would want to be treated if you were in their situation.

I’ll never forget a conversation my wife and I had with a former neighbour who was looking for a nanny.  She had terminated the employment of her previous one because she was unwilling to help out in the middle of the night when their newborn woke up and this caregiver wanted to go out on weeknights.  When my wife snapped at her that they are employees, not prisoners, the woman seemed surprised.  Needless to say, she never spoke to us again.,,

I want to thank the sender of this comment and if she would like to comment on this post with her information, I’d be more than happy to edit this post and include her details, if necessary.


One thought on “Taking a closer look at employing live-in caregivers, in Ontario. Their rights.

  1. Mindy December 11, 2011 / 10:38 pm

    Thanks for cleaning up my post a bit. I was so tired when I was writing it that I was literally falling asleep at the computer, which explains why it was a bit unreadable. There are two more things that are very important and that I should have mentioned. The first is that in some cases, you cannot proceed through both the Employment Standards ACt and the Human Rights Code. For example, if you file a claim under the Employment Standards Act under their pregnancy leave provisions, you probably can’t also proceed under the Human Rights Code to deal with the same issues. Before you file any claim, I would highly recommend calling the Human Rights Legal Support Centre to get some advice on where to file.

    The second very important thing is that both the ESA and the Human Rights Code have limitation periods. This means that you have to file your claim within a certain amount of time. Under the ESA, the limitation period is about 6 months. THis means that you have to file your claim within 6 months of your rights being breached.

    Under the Human Rights Code, the limitation period is 1 year. This means that if you are going to file your application you must do so within 1 year of the last Act of discrimination. These limitation periods are very important because if you don’t file in time, you might be barred from proceeding with your claim.

    Also, you are not obligated to file an Application if you call the Human Rights Legal Support Centre. If you call, you should be able to get some advice from an intake worker or possibly a lawyer and then you can decide where to go from there.


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