How are Workers Protected in Québec?

One of the great things about working in Greater Montréal is that you can benefit from the laws and regulations that protect employees in Québec and Canada.

For example, pay equity requires employers to offer women and men equal salaries if they represent the same value to the company.

For its part, the code du travail (labour code) regulates the development of trade unions and their accreditation. The unions and the employers negotiate specific working conditions that are documented in a collective agreement.

Employers must always offer their employees basic working conditions as set by the Loi sur les normes du travail and ensure that they are not subject or exposed to any hazards in the course of their employment.

Is it Covered by Québec Labour Standards?

The vast majority of full-time or part-time employees of organizations based in Québec are covered by Québec labour standards but there are exceptions.

Some workers are covered by only a part of the standards, including:

  • senior management
  • construction workers
  • some students starting their work experience
  • individuals who act as caregivers for someone who is ill, someone who is handicapped, a child or an elderly person at the person’s home

Self-employed workers who operate their own businesses are not covered by labour standards because they are not employees.

What is Covered?

Labour standards protect employees with respect to, in particular:

  • minimum wage
  • working hours and overtime
  • breaks, vacation time, holiday days, sick leave and family leave
  • travel compensation, clothing, equipment and mandatory trainings
  • dismissals, layoffs, redundancies and terminations of employment
  • psychological harassment
The normal workweek in Québec is usually 40 hours.

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