B.C. Labour Minister Harry Bains. (Hansard TV)

B.C. set to raise working age from 12 to 16, except for ‘light work’ at 14

NDP moves to tighten rules for sharing tips in restaurants, pubs

B.C. is changing its employment standards law to protect younger workers from dangerous jobs, and strengthen employees’ ability to take unpaid leave to search for a home or deal with other personal issues.

Labour Minister Harry Bains introduced changes in the B.C. legislature Monday that prohibits employers from withholding of tips from employees or deducting amounts from them. A new framework will allow tip pooling, but employers can only get a share when they do the same work as the other people in the pool.

The legislation raises the minimum age for working from 12 to 16, except for “light work” jobs such as stocking shelves at a grocery store, which 14- and 15-year-olds would still be able to do.

Bains said the changes will continue to allow young people to work on a family farm, or have a newspaper delivery route, and there will be an exemption for children to perform in music and entertainment with the permission of their parents. Chores that are not considered formal employment will not be affected, he said.

Bains said WorkSafeBC records in the past 10 years show $5 million paid out in injury claims for children who were doing paid work in hazardous conditions.

The legislation also creates a new system of job-protected unpaid leave for caring for seriously ill family members, and personal issues such as looking for a place to live.

The B.C. Building Trades praised the changes, particularly measures to target what executive director Tom Sigurdson called “organizations operating under the guise of being a trade union” whose agreements may be “substandard” according to the Employment Standards Act.

READ MORE: ‘Progressive’ unions shut out of public construction

READ MORE: Union construction cost competitive, BCBC boss says

“There are a few organizations that purport to be unions but are really nothing more than dues collection agencies,” Sigurdson said. “Those organizations are employer-obedient and do nothing to represent workers’ interests.”

The B.C. Building Trades were given exclusive access for large public construction projects after Premier John Horgan’s government took office in 2017, prompting objections from contractors who work with the Christian Labour Association of Canada and others who are not B.C. Building Trades members. The BCBC consists mainly of U.S.-based international unions.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Your weekly Mountain Minute

This week’s top stories… Continue reading

Highway 1 closed to due fatal accident east of Revelstoke

A dump truck lost control and the driver was ejected

Stetski talks up NDP election platform

NDP candidate for Kootenay-Columbia riding outlines election ‘commitments’ to Canadian voters

UPDATE: Boat sinks in less than a minute on Mitten Lake

A Saturday afternoon at Mitten Lake quickly turned sour for a local… Continue reading

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

Recall: Certain Pacific oysters may pose threat of paralytic shellfish poisoning

Consumers urged to either return affected packages or throw them out

How a Kamloops-born man helped put us on the moon

Jim Chamberlin did troubleshooting for the Apollo program, which led to its success

Sexual harassment complaints soaring amid ‘frat boy culture’ in Canada’s airline industry

‘It’s a #MeToo dumpster fire…and it’s exhausting for survivors’

How much do you know about the moon?

To mark the 50th anniversary of the first lunar landing, see how well you know space

Body, burning truck found near northern B.C. town

RCMP unsure if the two separate discoveries are related

Couple found dead along northern B.C. highway in double homicide

Woman from the U.S. and man from Australia found dead near Liard Hot Springs

UPDATE: West Kelowna fawn euthanized, not claimed by sanctuary

Gilbert the deer has been euthanized after a suitable home was not found in time

BC Wildfire Service warns wet weather no reason to be complacent

Fire risk currently low for much of B.C. compared to same time over last two years.

Most Read