With the Canadian Federal election coming up on October 21st, 2019, the CLR believes this is a
good opportunity to remind employers of their obligations under the Canada Elections Act.
On the Election Day, all eligible employees are entitled to have three consecutive hours
during which to vote while polls are open.1 These hours are 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. in
Saskatchewan. Further, an employee shall suffer no loss of wages when the time is to be taken
for voting during work hours.2 Nevertheless, the scheduling of this time away from work is at the
convenience of the employer and the employer can organize the schedule as it deems appropriate
(e.g. employees start late or leave early, etc.)
An employer is not required to provide paid time off if an employee has three
consecutive hours free from work while the polls are open. For example, an employee
who completes work at 4:30 p.m. will have three consecutive hours for voting and therefore
would not be entitled to time off. To ensure minimal disruption to both the employee and
employer’s work day, an employer may use both work and non-work hours to make up the three hours
off. For example, an employee whose shift ends at 5:00 p.m. would only be entitled to leave
work one half-hour early, with no loss of pay, to comply with the law.
Should you have any questions regarding your obligations on Election Day, feel free to
contact the CLR at (306) 352-7909 or visit http://www.elections.ca/.
1 Section 132 – Canada Elections Act
2 Section 133
September 25, 2019