In an effort to provide a better service to all involved, the Director of Fair trading for the government of AB made some significant changes to the legislation. These affect both the candidate looking for work and the employer’s looking for new employees. A few weeks ago, I had to deal with some questions from one of the departments with the government of AB and thought it might be wise to let everyone know about the new requirements.
In April 2012, the minister of Human Services signed into legislation the new requirements to the Business License’s for Employment Agencies. These changes went into effect in September 2012. While most of these requirements deal with protecting the rights of Temporary Foreign Workers, there are some notable changes that affect anyone who wants to work with an Employment Agency. I wanted to explain those changes to help you better understand what we, Employment Agencies, are required to have in place prior to working with you.
In Section 10 (1) of the Act, Agencies are required to enter into an agreement with any individual seeking employment through the agency prior to representing them. Many agencies will now require you to sign an agreement form that will detail the regulations as they pertain to the job seeker. Without the signed agreement we are not able to work with you. The most important information is the Fee Prohibition. Which is below in its entirety.
Section 12 of the Employment Agency Business Licensing
Regulation prohibits an employment agency business operator from directly or indirectly demanding or collecting a fee, reward or other compensation
(a) from an individual who is seeking employment or from another person on that individual’s behalf,
(b) from an individual who is seeking information respecting employers seeking employees or from another person on that individual’s behalf,
(c) from an individual for securing or attempting to secure employment for the individual or providing the individual with information respecting any employer seeking employees or from another person on that individual’s behalf, or
(d) from an individual for evaluating or testing the individual, or arranging for the individual to be evaluated or tested, for skills or knowledge required for employment, where the individual or employment is in Alberta, or from another person on that individual’s behalf.
With respect to the employers, this new legislation also affects the way in which we work together to find you a new employee whether it is temporary or direct hire.
Section 10 (2) & 10(3) of the legislation states;
2) An employment agency business operator shall enter into an agreement that meets the requirements of subsection (3) with an employer before securing an employee for the employer.
3) An employment agency business operator shall ensure that any agreement entered into by the employment agency business operator in accordance with subsection (1) or (2)
(a) is in writing and is signed by the parties to the agreement,
(b) sets out the services that are to be provided by the employment agency business operator under the agreement,
(c) sets out the respective responsibilities under the agreement of the employment agency business operator and the other parties to the agreement,
(d) includes a phone number and postal address, and e-mail address, if any, for the employment agency business operator and any agent that may act on behalf of the employment agency business operator under the agreement, and
(e) contains the statement set out in the Schedule respecting prohibited fees, in not less than 12-point bold face type.
What this means to you? That in order to work with an employment agency there must be a signed agreement in place. Failure to secure these agreements can result in some hefty fines. So when we ask you to sign the agreement it is not because we want you to, it is because we require it by law. If you have any questions about the legislation I would encourage you to review the act. If you feel that you are not being represented properly or treated according to the legislation I would suggest that you contact Service Alberta.