Navigating Bill 148 and the Changing Employment Law Landscape

Ontario’s restaurateurs and small businesses continue to adjust to the massive cost increases and labour reforms resulting from the Wynne government’s contentious Bill 148. A recent Restaurants Canada survey shows that 95 per cent of our members indicated they would have to make serious choices for their operation by finding ways to control costs, and a further 26 per cent suggested that they will be forced to close their doors altogether. Ontario restaurateurs operate with razor-thin margins, on average just 3.4 per cent, which is the lowest in Canada. Bill 148’s cost increases will push many restaurateurs to the brink. The 21-per-cent increase in the minimum wage (with another hike due next year) is just one component of the estimated $1.8 billion in new costs imposed by Bill 148. While wage-related adjustments are roughly 58 per cent of the total burden, another 42 per cent are due to over sixty…