In light of COVID-19, the Halifax Workers’ Action Centre (Halifax-WAC) is calling on the Provincial Government to take urgent and comprehensive action to protect vulnerable workers.
The Halifax-WAC asks that the following measures be implemented immediately:
- Provide 12 annual paid personal days, accrued at 1 day / month, which can be used for personal illness, family illness, injury, or emergency (scheduled or unscheduled).
- Provide 21 days of paid emergency leave (in addition to the personal days) for employees who are forced to abstain from working because of a public health crisis.
- Prohibit employers from demanding medical documentation to substantiate claims of short-term illness.
- Vigorously protect employees from reprisals when enforcing their workplace rights.
- Expand access to collective bargaining.
- Make clear that racism and xenophobia will not be tolerated.
- Reduce hours required to qualify for Employment Insurance benefits.
- Ensure everyone receives Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) regardless of immigration status.
- Increase income assistance benefits.
- Expedite income assistance applications.
- Impose a moratorium on all evictions.
- Restore rent control in Nova Scotia.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has put a growing number of Nova Scotians at immediate financial risk,” said Lisa Cameron, organizer with the Halifax-WAC. “The Provincial Government must take urgent action.”
The Halifax-WAC is a not-for-profit committed to improving the lives and working conditions of low-waged and marginalized workers. It provides systemic advocacy through campaigns like the Fight for 15 and Fairness and one-on-one support for workers facing difficulty in their individual employment relationships.