New legislation about be presented in Ontario would require employers to include expected salary ranges in job postings and make Ontario the first Canadian jurisdiction to require businesses to disclose if AI is used during their hiring process. PHOTO courtesy Lincoln Electric.
The Ontario government will soon introduce legislation that, if passed, would require employers to include expected salary ranges in job postings, giving workers more information to make informed decisions in their career search.
Currently 37% of online job postings in Ontario (2022) included salary information.
In addition, the legislation would make Ontario the first jurisdiction in Canada to require businesses to disclose if artificial intelligence (AI) is used during their hiring process. In February 2023, Statistics Canada reported that close to seven per cent of all businesses in Ontario were planning to adopt AI over the next 12 months.
“At a time when many companies are posting record profits, it is only fair they communicate transparently about how they pay workers,” said David Piccini, Minister of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development. “And as the use of artificial intelligence in Ontario skyrockets, our government will continue to take action to ensure workers aren’t excluded from the job market because of technological biases and that their privacy rights are protected.”
Women in Ontario earn an average of $0.87 for every dollar earned by men – a number that is worse for racialized and Indigenous women. Including salary ranges with job postings can help close the gender pay gap while allowing companies to find qualified candidates more quickly and improve retention, helping tackle the nearly 250,000-person labour shortage.
AI tools and algorithms are being adopted by Ontario businesses at a rapid rate and generate high volumes of personal data about job applicants and employees. Increasingly, they may also make employment decisions that affect people’s lives. In response to growing concerns about the ethical, legal and privacy implications of AI, Ontario is proposing to require employers to inform job seekers when it is used to inform decisions in the hiring process.
Seven in 10 workers have reported experiencing a form of harassment or violence in the workplace – rates that increase for women and gender-diverse workers. To help end workplace misconduct and hold abusers to account, the government will also be conducting consultations and detailed analysis on ending the use of Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs) in the settlement of cases of workplace sexual harassment, misconduct or violence.
“The consultations will identify legislative options to restrict the use of NDAs while protecting the rights of victims and survivors,” said Minister Piccini. “It’s past time we end a practice that allows businesses to shelter the behaviour of some of the worst members of our communities.”