Labour Layoff during COVID – 19, how temporary staffing has always been the right solution

The unfolding COVID-19 crisis poses unparalleled challenges for individuals, households, and firms. The highest priority is preventing the pandemic and protecting citizens. But fragmented supply chains, stabilization policies that restrict economic and social connections and declining demand have placed employment and livelihoods in jeopardy for people. An immediate response in terms of employment and social policy is required.

COVID-19 continues to have an enormous effect on workplaces contributing to unknown workplace implications. Everyone is affected by the Shelter in Place order, and routines have been wholly disrupted. This poses several challenges for companies, especially those who are forced to temporarily close their doors before orders for the Shelter in Place are lifted.

Considering the ongoing economic pressures, either as a result of voluntary or forced organizational shutdowns, many companies are introducing temporary layoffs, or at least considering them. Hearing employers talk about “laying off” workers isn’t unusual, particularly when business is slow. The employer ‘s purpose in such cases is not to terminate the employment arrangement, but to make use of temporary layoffs before business picks up.

Although a temporary layoff is a perfectly reasonable option for coping with a slowdown in the industry, many employers are unaware that temporary layoffs are not allowed under the Job Standards Act except under extremely specific circumstances.

The Employment Standards Act (British Columbia) allows an employer to temporarily terminate an employee in the following circumstances:

  • This is explicitly authorized by the contract of the employee.
  • The employer is in an enterprise where temporary layoffs are common practice across the industry. Work can not be carried out during the “break-up” season, for example, in logging.
  • The employee agrees to immediate redundancy

Where temporary layoffs are permitted, the maximum length of time an employee can be laid off is 13 weeks over a 20-week consecutive period. The period of 20 weeks commences on the first day of the layoff.

When every week that comes during the 20-week period an employee receives less than 50 percent of his or her daily pay, the week will also count against the 13-week span.

Because of the pandemic, there are plenty of businesses that are getting shut off while some are still operating. Among those companies that still operate during COVID – 19, the construction sector is the one. In most cases, companies ensure that they will survive during the global COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic, the effects of which have already been felt in the construction sector. For certain businesses such as the construction industry, at this point, the use of resources from a temporary staffing agency may be the best option. While many clients maintain staff for long-term and permanent jobs, temporary employees could be the best solution to maintain a sufficient workforce during times like these. True North Labour is the British Columbia construction staffing agency that provides skilled construction workers upon your request. cc We have a dedicated team to help builders and provide them with a well-trained workforce. Enable extra staff when they’re needed. In an emergency call us or whenever you plan a project. Whether it’s about a week or a year, consolidate your worksite with qualified and screened True North Labour workers for the duration of your project. We think you need the right people to get the job done right. TNL provides you with short-term, high-volume, seasonal, and exclusive contract solutions. We can also provide project-based assistance to tradesmen with the option of recruiting the workers as permanent staff.

At True North Labour, it is very important to us to have temporary construction work agency clients and to be a safe platform for workers. We have developed high-standard protocols to mitigate COVID 19 risk, spreading among the workforce. Our highest priority  @truenorthlabour, as a provider of daily construction labor services, is the health of both our customers and our employees. We have been following the rapid development of the COVID19 situation and we would like to address some health and safety measures that have been put in place to ensure the safety of all.

There is no doubt that we are living in these unsettling times. Coronavirus has brought chaos to organizations across the globe leaving many workers uncertain about their jobs. This is where the temporary staffing agency can lend great help to mitigate this issue. As employers consider the possibility of temporarily laying off their employees because of a substantial decline in business resulting from the COVID-19 crisis, they should ensure that they do so in accordance with the laws of the jurisdiction(s) in which their business operates.