COVID has impacted all businesses, large and small, regardless of location. many businesses are combating the crisis through extended work-from-home arrangements to salary freezes, large-scale layoffs, and more.
The employment laws of the country still however put legal obligations on the employers to fulfill their responsibilities towards employees. Here are ways to keep your organization on track while meeting your legal requirements.
Provide a safe and healthy workplace
Businesses across the globe have to follow certain occupational health and safety guidelines to ensure employee well-being. Governments like Canada come up with COVID-specific norms that companies need to comply with.
As businesses reopen, they need to take adequate steps for reducing employees’ exposure to infection. These steps include extra cleaning and sanitation measures, providing additional protective equipment, restricting visitors to the premises, or allowing employees to work from home.
Paying attention to mental health is equally vital as stress and anxiety are at an all-time high. Ensuring that people are safe from a physical and mental health perspective will keep your business legally safe and boost employee loyalty as well.
Pay salaries on time and in full
If you are unable to meet your payroll and benefit requirements due to COVID, consider seeking guidance from an expert employment lawyer Toronto for help.
They can provide clarity on the statutory guidelines related to salaries, bonuses, paid leaves, and medical benefits to be followed in this jurisdiction. Even as you seek relief for your business, the intention should be to pay salaries on time and in full.
If there are permitted time limits for deferring salaries, ensure that you adhere to them to prevent employee lawsuits.
Comply with social distancing and business travel regulations
Social distancing and travel restrictions are perhaps the best ways to curb the infection. For this reason, governments have imposed heavy restrictions on people and businesses. Businesses that flout these regulations have to pay hefty penalties.
The best approach right now is to comply with the guidelines strictly, both for cutting the risk of penalties and ensuring the safety of your workforce. Many businesses have consciously adopted work-from-home as an extended arrangement only for reducing commutes and encouraging social distancing for their employees.
The current situation is an unprecedented one, and the only way businesses can align is by being extra vigilant about employee health and well-being. Abiding by the regulations is essential, but going the extra mile can be a worthwhile effort in the long run. It can safeguard the people and the company while boosting their loyalty and consolidating your reputation.