In our article last month, we discussed the growing attention being paid to the issue of unpaid internships in Ontario. Since then the Ontario Ministry of Labour has released the results of a second workplace blitz designed to assess whether employers in the province are in compliance with the requirements of the Employment Standards Act, 2000 ("ESA").
The first heavily publicized blitz on unpaid internships was carried out in the summer of 2014. At that time, the Ministry investigated 56 different employers. Of those, 13 were found to be improperly using unpaid internships. It was found that the individuals in question were employees and entitled that the normal protections that workers receive. In total, the Ministry ordered that $48,000 was owed in unpaid wages, vacation pay and/or public holiday pay.