Susan Irwin, Lawyer/Executive Director | Apr 03, 2014

Are you aware that while every person working in Canada must have a Social Insurance Number (SIN), the federal government is discontinuing production of the plastic SIN card? As of April 1, 2014, Service Canada will begin issuing social insurance numbers to individuals in a paper format instead of a plastic card. There will be no recall of existing SIN cards.

Under regulations to the Employment Insurance Act, employees are required to provide their SIN either by presenting a SIN card, a letter confirming their SIN, or other documentation verifying their SIN.

Are you aware that beginning July 1, 2014, employers in Ontario must ensure that all their workers and supervisors complete a basic occupational health and safety awareness training program? The content of the training must meet the requirements of the Occupational Health and Safety Awareness and Training Regulation (O. Reg. 297/13) under the Occupational Health and Safety Act. The Regulation requires that employers must:

  • Ensure that workers complete a basic occupational health and safety awareness training as soon as reasonably possible;

  • Ensure that supervisors complete a basic occupational health and safety awareness program within one week of working as a supervisor; and

  • Maintain a record of the training completed by workers and supervisors and provide a worker or supervisor with written proof of completion of the training, if requested by the worker or supervisor (up to six months after ceasing to work for the employer).

Besides these new requirements employers will continue to have on-going duties to inform workers about workplace-specific hazards including a general duty to provide information, instruction and supervision to a worker to protect the health and safety of a worker.

Are you aware Rural Legal Services is changing its name to THE LEGAL CLINIC? The name change follows member approval to the amalgamation of Rural Legal Services with the Lanark Leeds & Grenville Legal Clinic Inc. effective April 1, 2014.

Although our name is changing, there will be no immediate change in the way you access our services because:

  • The full time office currently operated by RLS and located at Northern Frontenac Community Services in Sharbot Lake will remain open

  • The satellite office in Northbrook at Land o’ Lakes Community Services will be staffed by a lawyer two Wednesdays per month

  • You can still reach us by calling: (613) 279-3252 or toll free at 1-888-777-8916

On behalf of the Board and staff of Rural Legal Services I would like to take this opportunity to thank our readers and the community for your support. It has been very much appreciated.

Thank you.

Legalese is a column of general information and opinion on legal topics by the lawyers of Rural Legal Services, Box 359, Sharbot Lake, ON, K0H 2P0, 613-279-3252, or 1-888-777-8916. This column is not intended to provide legal advice. You should contact a lawyer to determine your legal rights and obligations.

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