The Public Service Alliance of Canada has today released a new, updated memo for all members entitled Covid-19, Your Rights at Work which we encourage you to read. 

Covid-19: Your Rights at Work

Like you, we are following developments around the Covid-19 virus closely. Our leadership is working with employers and lawmakers as the situation evolves.

At the moment, there seem to be more questions than answers, but over the coming days, we will keep you informed regarding the many issues this pandemic may generate for Yukon's workers. 

We are very concerned for the many Yukoners without sick leave.  We are determined to ensure that all workers can afford to take time off as needed when they're sick, in cautionary isolation, or caring for family members. We will hold our governments to their promises guaranteeing Canadian workers protection from financial disruption if their work is affected by the coronavirus.  

The federal government has promised aid to help provinces and territories respond to the Covid-19 crisis. These funds should provide income protection, fund research, public awareness campaigns and more. The Federal Employment Insurance Act grants Canadians access to EI benefits for illness or prescribed quarantine and the week-long EI waiting period has been waived. As details become available, we'll do our best to provide timely updates.

In the meantime, we want to send a special thank you to all of our members who keep our work places and public spaces clean; your job is difficult at the best of times, and the pressure is even greater now. We see how hard you're working, and we appreciate it.

Many of you - particularly those in our smaller bargaining units assist in workplace cleaning as part of your daily tasks. Remember that it's your employer's legal obligation to provide you with a safe, healthy workplace - that includes making sure the cleaning products you have to work with are approved and effective against the spread of this virus. Now is the time for workplace Health & Safety Committees to bring any OH&S concerns forward and demand action.

If your employer is not fulfilling their obligations, either through lack of appropriate supplies or by neglecting to fully staff custodial positions, we need to know that. Remember, you have the right to refuse unsafe work. 

For the time being, Yukon Employees' Union expects our office to be open next week. The Public Service Alliance of Canada's Regional Offices on the main floor of the YEU building will be closed until the end of March, with staff working from home. 

Please take care, and follow the guidance of our medical health professionals. The Yukon is a small territory and we are strong, resilient people. Now, more than ever, we are Stronger. Together. 

In solidarity,

Yukon Employees' Union

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