Ontario Newsroom

Ontario Seeking Input on Employment and Labour Law Rules

Archived News Release

Ontario Seeking Input on Employment and Labour Law Rules

Province Reviewing Exemptions and Exclusions Under the Employment Standards Act

Ministry of Labour

Ontario is seeking public input to help make workplaces fairer for workers in industries that currently have exemptions, special rules or exclusions. 

Starting today, people across the province can have their say on important decisions related to employment standards such as wages, hours of work and public holidays. The first phase of consultations focuses on eight occupations currently exempt from minimum employment standards:

  • Architects
  • Domestic Workers
  • Homemakers
  • IT Professionals
  • Managerial and Supervisory Employees
  • Pharmacists
  • Residential Building Superintendents, Janitors and Caretakers
  • Residential Care Workers

Ontario is also reviewing rights under the Labour Relations Act for domestic workers.

This public consultation forms part of the Ministry of Labour's broader review of Employment Standards Act (ESA) special rules and exemptions, as well as Labour Relations Act (LRA) exclusions. It is part of Ontario's plan for Fair Workplaces and Better Jobs, which includes raising the minimum wage, ensuring part-time workers are paid the same hourly wage as full-time workers, introducing paid sick days for every worker and stepping up enforcement of employment laws

To share your ideas on how to make workplaces fairer, go online by December 1, 2017.

Quick Facts

  • Currently, there are approximately 85 special rules and exemptions under the Employment Standards Act, a provincial law that provides minimum standards for wages, hours of work and other working conditions in employment.
  • Today’s announcement responds to the final report of the Changing Workplaces Review, conducted by Special Advisors C. Michael Mitchell and John C. Murray, over the course of two years. It is the first-ever independent review of the Employment Standards Act, 2000 and Labour Relations Act, 1995.
  • In May 2017 the Special Advisors released a 419-page Final Report, which proposed a review of ESA exemptions and contained comments on exclusions under the LRA.

Additional Resources


“This review is part of our overall commitment to address the realities of the modern workplace and create a fair society. Fairness and decency must be the values that define our workplaces. This consultation will help ensure this remains a reality in Ontario.”

Kevin Flynn

Minister of Labour

Media Contacts



Government Health and Wellness Jobs and Employment