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Media Room 

Study advocates raising commercial freezer temperatures
CHCH

Toronto City Council clears way for new wave of restaurants in Parkdale Neighbourhood 
RestoBiz

King St. Pilot Project should be short- turned: Biz 
Toronto Sun 

A Survey of King Street Businesses by a hospitality association finds almost all report sales are down 
Toronto Star 

How Industry Changes Are Affecting Labour Supply 

Foodservice & Hospitality 

Hotel Association Compains of "Unregulated" Airbnb on their business 
Global News 

Have Employers' Minimum Wage Concerns Fallen on Deaf Ears? 
Human Resources Director 

New Labour Report Proposes Big Changes for Ontario's Part-Time Workers 
Humber News


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Hospitality Headlines 
Understanding Cannabis Legalization in Ontario
On Wednesday October 17, 2018, the Province of Ontario officially legalized the use of recreational cannabis. The Ontario Restaurant Hotel & Motel Association has prepared the following information package on the legalization of cannabis on Ontario and how it may impact the workplaces of ORHMA’s members. 

The subsequent information will provide an overview of the following: 
• The Federal Cannabis Act 
• Retail Stores
• Regulation and Enforcement 
• Cannabis Rules (Cannabis in Guest Rooms, Restaurants & Bars) 
• The Implications for Employers 
• Questions and Answers on Cannabis and Ontario’s Human Rights Code
• Next Phase on Cannabis Legislation   
• ORHMA's Positioning 

Minimum Wage Increase Scrapped for January 2019 

Our voice was heard and the Ford government has announced scrapping the minimum wage hike that was legislated and set for January 2019 for general minimum wage, student wage and server wage. Although we are pleased with the outcome of our advocacy for a freeze to the minimum wage increase, ORHMA has also requested that the government review the 2019 increase based on CPI on the current minimum wage to be reviewed and put on hold until business can catch up from recent changes. All provincial labour laws are currently under review and ORHMA has met the Minister of Labour and we remain in consultations to repeal Bill 148. New labour legislation will be introduced and passed before December 12, 2018. We are pleased to welcome the Minister of Labour as a guest speaker at ORHMA’s next Board of Directors meeting, taking place on October 29, 2018.  Read more.  

WSIB Rates Lowered for Businesses and Eliminating the Unfunded Liability    

Announced at WSIB's Annual General Meeting, Ontario businesses will receive a reduction on their WSIB premium rates. These rates will be reduced by an average of 29.8% for 2019. WSIB also announced, for the first time in recorded provincial history, the WSIB's "Unfunded Liability" has been eliminated almost 10 years ahead of schedule. 
ORHMA, on behalf of our members and hospitality businesses, has been at the table with the WSIB for several years and we are thrilled that the announced rate reductions are a result of our long-term advocacy. Businesses have now seen rate reductions for a third year in a row. "ORHMA is very pleased and supportive of the WSIB rate reductions by 29.8 per cent for hotels and motels and 31.6 percent for restaurants and caterers." said Tony Elenis, ORHMA President, and CEO. By eliminating the unfunded liability, businesses can now have the confidence to reintroduce advantages in areas such as additional safety initiatives to employees. ORHMA believes that eliminating the unfunded liability is a positive turning point to ensure that Ontario's hospitality businesses' workplace health and safety system is in great shape.The WSIB is making investments in technology that will simplify the way businesses engage with them. For many businesses across Ontario, the calculation for premium rates will change and the rate setting model will be more reflective of an individual claim experience. Ontario's hospitality industry looks forward to further efficiencies with the WSIB. 


Credit Card Interchange Fees Reduced to 1.4%
On Thursday August 9, the Federal Government of Canada announced that it has helped secure new, separate and voluntary commitments from three payment card networks that will lead to lower costs for small and medium-sized businesses — changes largely championed by the Small Business Matters (SBM) Coalition, which the Ontario Restaurant Hotel & Motel Association (ORHMA) has been an active member of, representing and advocating for the hospitality industry in Ontario. Our members have voiced their concerns of paying high credit card interchange fees, in conjunction with many other hefty operating costs, therefore ORHMA was committed to lobby, with the SBM Coalition, for some relief for small and medium sized-businesses. Merchant fees (swipe fees) charged to Canada's small businesses when they process customer transactions paid by credit cards are amongst the highest in the world—ranging from 1.5% to 4% of a purchase. Particularly for small business, these costs constrain their ability to invest in their businesses, their ability to hire new employees and result in increased consumer prices, even for those consumers paying by cash or debit. 

Marijuana In The Workplace: Conversations About the Impact on Employers and Employees 
Workplace Safety & Prevention Services 
How do you fulfill your duty to accommodate while protecting your rights as an employer and those of your employees and customers? How does one define impairment and fit for work? What types of tasks are safety-sensitive? These were just a few of the questions that were discussed in October 2017 when leaders came together at the CEO Health + Safety Leadership Network Roundtable to discuss the impact of the legalization of recreational marijuana in the workplace. The federal Cannabis Act1 was introduced on April 13, 2017. Ontario led province-wide consultations before introducing its Cannabis Act on November 1, 2017. It is expected that in July 2018, cannabis will be legalized across Canada. Read more. 


Changes to Ontario's Public Holiday Pay 

Following feedback from stakeholder groups, including ORHMA and its members, the statutory holiday pay calculation change enacted through Bill 148 will revert back to the four weeks an employee works prior to the holiday divided by 20 beginning July 1, 2018 as an interim measure. The Province will undertake a full review of this section of the ESA in the later part of 2018. The previous enacted calculation created confusion increasing the amount paid to casual employees. Read more.

Ontario Menu Labelling Update 
The Ministry continues to work with public health units (PHUs) and industry to support implementation of the HMCA. In order to support the continued implementation of the HMCA and in response to some of the questions that have been brought to our attention in the last few months, we are pleased to release a 2018 set of questions and answers (Qs and As). These Qs and As have been developed in consultation with PHUs and aim to provide as much clarity as possible, and in areas where there is room for flexibility, the responses aim to promote consensus. In the interest of working towards improving consistency, these questions will be incorporated as part of the inspector training. This is the first set of 2018 Qs and As, and we are currently working on the next set of questions in consultation with PHUs, which will aim to provide further clarity on questions including capitalization of the word “Calories/Cals” and whether specific sections of the store are exempt. Read more. 

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