Posted on Jul 12, 2017
When I worked as mechanic and then later, as a diesel engine salesman, I was lucky to have had positive experiences with each of my employers. But my experience is not everyone's experience. And that is why I am proud of the changes our government is making to ensure that Alberta has fair, modern and family-friendly workplaces that support our growing economy.
One of the bills of this past session was Bill 17 - Fair and Family-friendly Workplaces Act. This brought our Employment Standards Code and Labour Relations Code legislation in line with trends and standards across Canada. These amendments will make life better for Alberta families and protect vulnerable Albertans by, for example, repealing the ability for employers to pay employees with disabilities less than minimum wage. Albertans also had to work for one year before they were able to access compassionate care, maternity and parental leave. That was the longest wait period in Canada. Our government has reduced that period to 90 days like Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Quebec, and Nova Scotia.
Because all Albertans deserve to be treated fairly at work, you are now eligible for new unpaid leaves that would provide up to 36 weeks of job protection for parents with critically ill or injured children. Parents caring for a critically ill child should not have the extra stress of worrying about if they will have a job once they return to work. In addition, 36 weeks of job protected leave applies to those fleeing domestic violence. A new unpaid leave provides up to 10 days of job protection per year for employees addressing a situation of domestic violence. And as we celebrate Canada Day this July first, I am happy that we are providing new Canadians with a half-day leave so they will not lose their job for attending their Canadian citizenship ceremony.
This session also saw the passing of Bill 205 – Advocate for Persons with Disabilities Act – We will be one of three provinces in Canada to have such an advocate. I continued my consultative work on my own bill, The Henson trust. I travelled to Lethbridge in June, and in July I will hold a consultation in Medicine Hat. Thanks to all for your excellent contributions. I look forward to this becoming the law of land in Alberta.
Here in Calgary Currie I recently attended the opening of a newly renovated affordable housing unit in Bankview. This Calgary Housing Company renovation provides 26 households with modern, safe, and affordable housing, and is part of a 1.3 million dollar investment in senior and affordable housing in our riding. In June I saw many of you at the Lilac Festival and I look forward to seeing many more of you at my Stampede Breakfast at the Glenbrook Community Association on July 9th from 9:00-11:30pm. We will have food with halal options, face painting, music, and even wiener dog racing! I’d love to visit your events too - please contact me at the office, or on Facebook or Twitter @BrianMalkinson.