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Ontario government announces new protections for firefighters and employees

DAN CEARNS The Standard

DURHAM/KAWARTHA LAKES: The Ontario government is providing firefighters in the province with more protections.

On Wednesday, November 8th, David Piccini, Ontario’s Minister of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development, announced the government is “lowering the duration of employment needed, to receive presumed [or] automatic compensation prior to diagnosis,for esophageal cancer, from 25 to 15 years.”

An Ontario government press release states, this decision will give firefighters “faster access to WSIB benefits and other critical services.”

Minister Piccini said, firefighters “will forever be protected in their line of duty,” and added, the Ontario government “will always have firefighters’ backs.”

“This is truly just good public policy. No partisanship here. This is the right thing to do,” the labour minister stated.

The Ontario government also announced, they will be “launching consultations on a new, job-protected leave, to match the length of federal Employment Insurance sickness benefits, which is 26 weeks” for employees dealing with critical illnesses.

“A job-protected leave could ensure employees, who receive a diagnosis of cancer or other diseases, will have the peace of mind their job will be waiting for them while they seek treatment,” the government’s press release explained.

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