Military Leave Policy

Introduction

Supporting Canada’s Reserve Force and individual Reservists has taken on a new importance in recent years. The number of Reservists on full-time service has grown significantly, and the length of periods of service for Reserve training and deployments has also increased over the years. The environment in which Reservists now serve is very different from that of earlier decades.

Most jurisdictions in Canada now have some form of job protection legislation for Reservists.

This legislation has changed what employers must do when granting leave for deploying Reservists, and has added an extra consideration in supporting Reservists.

Employers in Canada have always shown excellent support for their Reservist employees. Similarly, many educational institutions have gone out of their way to support student Reservists. Many employers have signed a Statement of Support for the Reserve Force, and some have gone the extra mile and have developed a Military Leave Policy for their Reservists as part of their overall Human Resources management strategy.

This Guide will assist employers, managers, Human Resources professionals and supervisors in writing a Military Leave Policy to assist your Reservist employees and/or student Reservists. In this Guide you will find general information on the Reserves, on job protection legislation, and the steps to follow in writing your own Policy. You will also find contact information for the members of the Canadian Forces Liaison Council who can help you at any stage in the process.

Canada’s Reserve Force

They bring leadership and management skills to their civilian jobs, and many of the technical skills they learn through military training and experience are easily transferred to the civilian workplace.

The Canadian Armed Forces is made of up two components, the Regular Force and the Reserve Force. Members of the Regular Force serve full-time in the Army, Navy or Air Force.

Members of the Reserve Force usually serve on a part-time basis, while at the same time pursuing civilian careers or academic studies. They are members of the Naval Reserve, the Army Reserve, the Air Reserve, the Health Services Reserve, the Special Operations Forces Command Reserve or the Legal Services Reserve. About one-third of the Reserve Force are students attending post-secondary institutions.

All military service in Canada, both Regular and Reserve, is voluntary. Members of the Reserve Force may volunteer to go on deployment in either Canada or abroad. They may only be called up for non-voluntary service in times of national emergency, as defined in the National Defence Act and in the emergency legislation of the Government of Canada. [1]

Patterns of service in the Reserve Force can vary from one component to another. As a result, a Naval Reservist may have different support requirements from his or her Army Reserve counterpart, both of which could be different from those of an Air Reservist. These differences could apply to both part-time service and for periods of limited full-time service.

All Reservists, no matter which Reserve they belong to, are valuable members of the civilian work force. They bring leadership and management skills to their civilian jobs, and many of the technical skills they learn through military training and experience are easily transferred to the civilian workplace.

Job Protection Legislation for Reservists

No legislation can replace the goodwill of employers towards their Reservist employees.

Since June 2012, the federal government, all ten provincial governments, and all three territories have passed job protection legislation for Reservists. This legislation amends federal, provincial or territorial labour codes and employment standards, and sets the minimum standards for employers to follow in terms of defining length of absences, frequency of absences, benefits to be granted, etc. The legislation, in most cases, indicates how much notice a Reservist must give his or her employer prior to departure on military leave, whether official notification is required from the Canadian Armed Forces, and the start and end dates of the requested leave.

In some cases, the legislation also includes exemptions (a hardship clause) and penalties for non-compliance.

No two pieces of legislation are alike. While the general thrust across the country is similar, the details vary greatly from one jurisdiction to another.

A general description of the legislation may be found in the Job Protection Legislation section.

No legislation can replace the goodwill of employers towards their Reservist employees. The voluntary support of Reservists by employers is the key to a successful partnership that will benefit both employers and their Reservist employees.

Why is Military Leave Required?

Members of the Reserve Force who are employed in the civilian work force may need military leave from their full-time employment in order to undertake military training or to go on operational deployments, either in Canada or overseas. The length of time required will vary from individual to individual, and may differ from year to year, depending on the position the Reservist holds in a Reserve unit, and the stage of his or her career.

The most frequently encountered request for leave is to permit a Reservist to take the training courses that are essential for advancement in his or her military career. A Reservist employee may therefore on occasion ask for leave for an extended military training period, depending on the career pattern. This period of absence may be between two and ten to twelve weeks.

In addition to the training requirements, a Reservist might volunteer go on a deployment, to serve in a full-time military operation either in Canada or overseas. International deployments may be as long as eighteen to twenty-four months, including pre-deployment training, the deployment itself, and a post-deployment period which includes reintegration into civilian society. Domestic deployments may be shorter, but might also be on very short notice in the case of a response to a natural or man-made disaster. [2]

What is a Military Leave Policy?

Your Military Leave Policy is basically a social contract between you and your Reservist employee or student Reservist. It also demonstrates your commitment to Canada’s security and prosperity.

Your policy should take into account the provisions of the applicable job protection legislation under which your business or institution falls, and should clearly state the amount of military leave you are prepared to grant, the conditions, the financial support, if any, that you are prepared to offer, and the effect a leave of absence will have on other employee benefits and conditions of employment.

Your Military Leave Policy should also clearly indicate the obligations of your Reservist employees or student Reservists who are requesting such leave, in addition to the benefits you wish to offer or the constraints you might wish to impose. These obligations include the requirement to give sufficient warning of a departure and a mutually agreed date for the person’s return. The policy can also require the Reservist to notify you in writing and provide you with written justification for an absence for military deployment or training.

Why Should my Company have a Military Leave Policy?

Canadian Reservists are highly motivated, very capable men and women. The skills they develop in the military are carried over into their civilian lives, and your company benefits from employing individuals who have demonstrably superior leadership and problem solving skills, communications and leadership ability, and who know first-hand the meaning of teamwork.

Having a formal Military Leave Policy in place reflects the importance that your company puts on continued learning and development, in addition to recognizing the benefits that Reservists bring to the civilian work place. It also means that you can determine how you would like to support your Reservist employees.

The benefits called for under job protection legislation provide only the suggested basics for the support of your Reservist employees. Your Military Leave Policy can expand upon these, with advantageous results for both you and your Reservist employee. These benefits can include health care coverage for your employee and his or her family, protection of seniority, accrual of leave, and payment into pension plans.

Your Military Leave Policy should benefit you as well as your Reservist employees. For example, you are encouraged to treat your Reservist employee’s military training activities of as part of your company’s professional development program, even though the training is provided at no cost to you. This is particularly true in the case of management and leadership training, as well as for the learning of more technical skills. Military training activities can include weekend training exercises or military courses of longer duration. Some of the military skills to which you can equate civilian qualifications are also acquired during extended international or domestic deployments. These deployments can also count as professional development in the civilian workplace.

Military Leave for Reservists should be viewed separately from vacation or annual leave. In other words, Reservists should not be obliged to use their vacation time in order to undergo military training.

Finally, having a clearly defined Military Leave Policy in place will militate against any sense of discrimination or favouritism amongst your employees, and will assist your managers in handling any problems or misunderstandings that do arise.

Why Should an Educational Institution have a Military Leave Policy?

Educational institutions have a dual role in supporting Reservists: some of your faculty and staff may be members of Reserve units in your city or town; some of your students may well be members of those same units. However, the requirements for support for these two groups of Reservists may be very different, depending on an individual’s circumstances.

Faculty and staff members are likely to be further advanced in their military careers than their student counterparts.

They would therefore be looking for military leave for a limited duration to attend military training courses (two to six weeks), or for extended deployments of up to eighteen to twenty-four months. Either of these types of leave requests could be covered in a Military Leave Policy included in your overall human resources strategy.

Students have very different needs in terms of support.

Student Reservists normally train with a Reserve unit one evening a week and go on a weekend exercise once or twice a month. Their extended training courses are generally scheduled for the summer months, matched to their academic timetable.

Like your Reservist employees, student Reservists may also volunteer to go on an international or domestic deployment. Doing so might mean that they could miss one or more terms or semesters. Federal legislation relating to the Canada Student Loans Act permits abatement of loans and grants for the period of the deployment, but that is only part of the support that may be needed. [3]

A student might need assistance in re-scheduling examinations or term assignments in order to participate in pre-deployment training. Similarly, students might need consideration in their ability to obtain necessary prerequisite courses, exemption from prerequisites or in the sequencing of courses.

These are some of the details which would form the basis of your student Reservist Military Leave Policy. Of course, it would be clearly understood by the student requesting the leave that any accommodations would only be given if they do not compromise your institution’s academic integrity.

Obligations of Reservist Employees and Student Reservists

Having an effective Military Leave Policy must be the result of a two-way discussion, with all Reservists, whether employees or students, taking responsibility for coordinating their military and civilian careers.

Even though Reservists are not obligated to identify themselves to you as members of Canada’s Reserve Force, they are nevertheless encouraged to do so by their military commanders. They are also advised to take the initiative and work with you to help you understand the balancing act required to maintain both a civilian and a military life, to the benefit of all concerned. The Reservist can thus keep you well informed of developments in his or her military career. That way, you can benefit from their military training and experiences – and your Reservist employee can invite you to learn first hand about such training by visiting military establishments and exercises, or by attending sessions on employer support conducted in the community or at military units. [4]

Reserve service in Canada is voluntary, although the Reservist may feel an obligation to serve under certain circumstances. In those cases, having a good relationship in place in advance can help both parties. Clearly having both parties understand each other’s responsibilities and obligations is a critical step.

You can ask your Reservist to submit a request for a military leave of absence in writing, and ask that they provide you with written justification for the leave request from their military commander. You can also ask your Reservist to give you more notice than that called for in your job protection legislation if your own circumstances demand more flexibility. The setting of start- and end-dates for a period of military leave can in some cases be negotiated beyond the demands of your job protection legislation, which will help you with such issues as replacing a staff member or helping reintegrate your Reservist employee back into your work force.

These responsibilities and obligations can be set out in your Military Leave Policy.

Elements of a Military Leave Policy

No single model of a Military Leave Policy will fit every business, organization or educational institution. Policies will inevitably vary from company to company depending on their size, role and organization; the position held by the Reservist in the organization; the ability to replace individuals on an extended period of leave; terms of collective agreements, etc. An educational institution might wish to have several policies, one which covers students and another for faculty and staff. Your Military Leave Policy can be as simple or as detailed as your own circumstances dictate.

If your company has employees working in a number of jurisdictions, or if you are part of a multinational organization, your military leave policy might have to reflect the conditions of your different locations, or whether your company has military leave policies in effect in other countries.

Similarly, your policy will have to align with your collective agreements.

The Reservist job protection legislation that governs your business will have to be considered when drafting a Military Leave Policy.

While the details vary from one jurisdiction to another, in all cases the legislation includes information on the following issues that you will need to consider when drafting a policy tailored to your own requirements:

  • Minimum employment period before leave of absence
  • Notice period for granting of leave of absence
  • Length of leave of absence
  • Frequency of leave of absence
  • Notice for reinstatement
  • Benefits

Some legislation includes provisions covering student Reservists. Others include a hardship clause or exempt certain professions or groups of employees.

When you are thinking about what benefits to grant your Reservist employees, you might want to view those called for in the legislation as being the minimum acceptable level, and build upon them as you see fit.

Writing Your Military Leave Policy

Your policy may be very short, or more complex, depending on the number of leave requests you expect to get each year, what you anticipate the impact of granting leave will be and the details included in your jurisdiction’s job protection legislation.

Over and above the legislative requirements, there are some common or basic points that you can consider in developing your policy. Your own circumstances will dictate what your Military Leave Policy will look like, and how it will be handled within your company or educational institution. Your policy may be very short, or more complex, depending on the number of leave requests you expect to get each year, what you anticipate the impact of granting leave will be and the details included in your jurisdiction’s job protection legislation.

Checklist

Following is a checklist of items that employers should consider when developing a military leave policy. Reservists and employers may also use it when they discuss applications for military leave in situations where a policy does not already exist.

How is military leave to be classified in the policy manual?

  • Part of training/development
  • Part of absences
  • A stand-alone section
  • Other (specify)

Are there any restrictions to the granting of military leave?

  • Yes
  • No

If "Yes," what are they? (Consider all that are applicable)

  • Only if a suitable replacement can be found
  • Only for those with a defined length of service with the company (e.g. one year)
  • Only in "slow season"
  • Other (specify)

Reason for the request

  • Annual exercise
  • Regularly scheduled training
  • Domestic operation
  • Emergency
  • Non-emergency
  • International operation
  • Peacekeeping
  • Other humanitarian mission
  • Miscellaneous operations or activities such as special events or assistance to civilian agencies

Time required

  • 2–4 weeks
  • 4–8 weeks
  • 8 weeks or more

Type of leave

  • Leave with pay
  • Leave without pay
  • A combination

If leave with pay or combination, for how long?

  • Limited
  • Unlimited

If limited, how long?

  • 2 weeks
  • 3 weeks
  • Other (specify)

Will the company "top up"?

  • Yes
  • No

If "Yes," for how long?

  • 2 weeks
  • Other (specify)

How will the top up be accomplished?

  • Employee turnover of portion of military pay equivalent to days of normally scheduled civilian work
  • Partial payment of civilian salary
  • Other

Notice required

  • For exercises
    • 4–6 weeks
    • Other (specify)
  • For training course
    • 4–6 weeks
    • Other (specify)
  • For domestic operations
    • Emergency – specify method preferred
    • Non-emergency
      • 4–6 weeks
      • Other (specify)
  • For international/humanitarian operations
    • 4–6 weeks
    • Other (specify)

Proof of service required?

  • Yes
  • No

Nature of proof required

  • Message
  • Letter from unit Commanding Officer
  • Telephone call
  • Message and letter from unit Commanding Officer
  • Other (specify)

How will the company handle the following?

  • Life insurance
  • Long-term disability
  • Pension
  • Major medical
  • Dental
  • Optical
  • Vacation
  • Seniority
  • Bonus
  • Profit sharing
  • Bonds
  • Stock options
  • Computer
  • Cell phone
  • Company car
  • Car allowance
  • United Way
  • Share-Life
  • RRSPs
  • Seniority
  • Job postings
  • Sick leave
  • Clothing allowance
  • Commissions
  • Promotions
  • Cost of living pay increases
  • Performance pay
  • Merit increase

Who signs off on military leave requests?

  • Supervisor
  • Department manager
  • Human resources
  • President
  • Other (specify)

Are there any restrictions on the number of military leaves per year?

  • Yes
  • No

If "Yes"

  • 1 per year
  • 2 per year
  • Total length of leave(s)
  • Other (specify)

Frequently Asked Questions

Is service with the Reserve Force mandatory?

All military service in Canada, both Regular and Reserve, is voluntary. Members of the Reserve Force may volunteer to go on deployment in either Canada or abroad. They may only be called up for non-voluntary service in times of national emergency, as defined in the National Defence Act and in the emergency legislation of the Government of Canada. An emergency is defined by the National Defence Act as “an insurrection, riot, invasion, armed conflict or war, real or apprehended.” 

Why is military leave required?

Training at the local Reserve unit is normally conducted on evenings and weekends. However, members of the Reserve Force who are employed in the civilian work force may require military leave from their full-time employment in order to undertake extended military training, such as career courses that are several weeks in duration, or to go on operational deployments, either in Canada or overseas.

How much military leave is required?

Depending on the Reservist and the level at which he or she is qualified in the military, leave for training may be between two and twelve weeks. Leave for an operational deployment could be as long as 18–24 months.

What is Job Protection Legislation?

In essence, the legislation provides protection for Reservists who require military leave from their civilian employment for military training or to deploy on missions either in Canada or internationally. The provisions provided for by Job Protection Legislation differ from one jurisdiction to another. Legislation amends Federal, Provincial or Territorial labour codes and employment standards, but sets the minimum standards for employers to follow in terms of minimum notice to proceed and return from leave, defining length of absences, frequency of absences, benefits to be granted, etc.

Where can I find out information on my Job Protection Legislation?

A general description of the legislation may be found in the Job Protection Legislation section.

What skills do Reservists bring to the civilian work force?

Canadian Reservists are highly motivated, very capable men and women. The skills Reservists develop in the military include demonstrably superior leadership, strong work ethics, management, problem solving skills, communications and leadership ability, and teamwork. Many of the technical skills they learn through military training and experience are easily transferred to the civilian workplace. Providing a Military Leave policy will benefit the employer / educational institution and the Reservists, and will help ensure that Reservists bring back these highly valuable skills to their civilian workplaces.

What is a Military Leave Policy?

A Military Leave Policy is basically a social contract between you (civilian employer or educational institution) and your Reservist-employee or student Reservist. It also demonstrates your commitment to Canada’s security and prosperity. It states your position, as an employer or education institution, regarding the conditions under which your company/school is prepared to grant military leave for your Reservist-employee / student Reservist to participate with the Canadian Armed Forces for the purpose of attending courses or training, participating in military exercises or deploying in a domestic or overseas operation.

Why should my company/educational institution have a Military Leave Policy?

Having a formal Military Leave Policy in place reflects the importance that your company puts on continued learning and development, in addition to recognizing the benefits that Reservists bring to the civilian work place. It also means that you can determine how you would like to support your Reservist employees. Having a clearly defined Military Leave Policy in place will mitigate against any sense of discrimination or favouritism amongst your employees, and will assist your managers in handling any problems or misunderstandings that do arise.

Who does a Military Leave Policy benefit?

You, as an employer or educational institution, your company or school, your Reservist-employee or student Reservist and ultimately Canada will benefit from your Military Leave Policy. A clear and concise Military Leave Policy would minimize any ambiguity of interpretation when a Reservist-employee or student Reservist asks for military leave to serve.

Who should be involved in writing a Military Leave Policy?

While ultimately the development of a Military Leave Policy is the responsibility of the employer’s Human Resources specialists, both the employer and the Reservist may want to discuss its content with union leaders, Reserve Force unit commanders in the area or a Canadian Forces Liaison Council representative. Military leave may require more consultations than is normal; hence entering into a constructive dialogue will help all parties. These discussions should provide you with an understanding of the various situations when a Reservist may request military leave. You will then be better informed in assessing your Reservist’s military activities to arrive at a Military Leave Policy that is best suited for your company or educational institution.

What should be included in a Military Leave Policy?

A Military Leave Policy should take into account the provisions of the applicable job protection legislation under which your business or educational institution falls. It should clearly state the amount of leave you are prepared to grant; the conditions; the financial support, if any, that you are prepared to offer; and the effect a leave of absence will have on other employee benefits and conditions of employment. Your Military Leave Policy can expand upon these basic requirements. For example, many employers maintain Reservists’ benefits during their service period to ensure that there is no interruption of coverage for their families.

A Military Leave Policy should also indicate the obligations of your Reservist employees or student Reservists who are requesting such leave, in addition to the benefits you wish to offer or the constraints you might wish to impose.

Should my Reservist employees use their vacation leave for military training?

Military Leave should be viewed separately from vacation or annual leave – Reservists should not be obligated to use their vacation time in order to undergo military training.

Am I obliged to pay a Reservist who requests military leave?

While involved in military activities, Reservists are paid for their service by the Canadian Armed Forces. Although military leave may be without pay, employers/educational institutions may instead decide to provide “top up” pay to make up the difference where Reserve pay is less than civilian pay. Providing “top up” pay is encouraged to ensure that the Reservists and his/her family do not suffer financially.

What proof is available that Reservists require military leave?

Under most circumstances, Reservists are notified in advance of their selection for a course, training, exercise or operation by formal military correspondence. Copies of this correspondence and, if the employer requests it, a letter from the Reservist’s Commanding Officer can be provided. In situations where very short or no notice is given, Reservists are advised to contact their employer immediately and follow the procedures established by the employer for reporting absences from work.

Do I need a separate policy in place for long-term and for short-term emergency military leave?

No. You could simply have a separate clause covering different circumstances, including communications between you and your Reservist employee, especially in the case of emergency deployments.

What happens if the Reservist fails to return from military leave?

In most cases, military courses, training and exercises have a defined time frame, including an end date. Reservists therefore know in advance when they will be able to return to work. Military leave is considered a privilege and is unlikely to be abused. It is therefore recommended that any unexplained or unjustified absence be investigated before disciplinary action is implemented.

What happens in the event that the Reservist is injured while on a military leave of absence?

The Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) has programs in place to assist military members who are injured, become ill while serving or are medically released from the Forces. Military members who suffer an injury attributable to service may receive medical care at the CAF’s expense beyond the termination of their period of duty as authorized by the Commanding Officer. Eligible military members may be retained on full-time military pay for up to two years or more until care is completed or the member is medically released and care is turned over to Veterans Affairs Canada.

The CAF provides military members with every possible assistance so that they and their families may continue to enjoy the quality of life they deserve. A network of support centres across Canada has been established to meet the needs of ill and injured military members and provides an integrated ‘one-stop’ service. Policies are in place for the reimbursement of expenses for those who require adaptations to their home and special needs equipment and appliances to address their sickness or injury.

The CAF has an Accidental Dismemberment Insurance Plan which provides a lump sum benefit for an accidental dismemberment or the loss of sight, speech or hearing, which is attributable to military service. Coverage is automatic for all Reservists.

If your Reservist-employee requires extended military care and is either unable to return to work, full-time or at all, the Reservist’s Commanding Officer or designate will keep you informed of his/her condition and is available to provide you advice on steps to be taken. Alternatively, please contact the CFLC Provincial Chair or Field Services Staff.

Do Reservists have long term disability coverage through the military?

Reservists are entitled to compensation when they are incapacitated due to injury, disease or illness attributable to military service. Compensation is at Reserve Force rates of pay.

Where can I get more guidance?

Help in writing your Military Leave Policy is readily available, no matter whether you are an employer or the administrator of an educational institution. If you require assistance, information or advice, please contact your CFLC Provincial or Territorial Chair. Alternatively, you may contact the CFLC Secretariat.

Sample Military Leave Policy

This section comprises a detailed sample military leave policy that takes into account the issues discussed in the preceding sections. It can be adapted for use in your organization.

[Title:]

[Issued by:]

[Military Leave Policy]

[Human Resources Department]

[Effective Date:]

[Approved by:]

Purpose

To allow employees who are members of the Canada's Reserve Force the time necessary to undergo training and/or participate in military activities without loss of their job, pay, benefits, seniority, or other privileges they receive as a member of the XYZ Company.

Scope

All full-time employees with at least 12 months' service.

Policy

The XYZ Company supports Canada's Reserve Force and any employee who is a member of the Reserve Force. To that end, the Company intends to release from work, without penalty, subject to operational requirements and collective agreements, its employees who are members of the Reserve Force, to allow them to participate in military training, courses and operations.

Definitions

Exercise. A period of time, (usually two weeks) that is scheduled annually by the employee's Reserve Force element (Naval, Army, Communication or Air).

Trade or Occupational Training. A period of two weeks or more which is required for the employee to progress in his/her chosen military trade or occupation. This includes courses that are not trade-specific but may be required for progression in the reserve organization, including courses required for promotion to their next rank or courses or assignments that are required prior to assuming greater responsibility within their Reserve Force element.

Domestic Operation. These types of operations can be classified as:

Emergency. An event within Canada that has resulted in the Armed Forces (including the Reserve) being called in to assist civilian authorities. (For example, floods, severe weather disruptions, forest fires, search and rescue, civil disruptions, etc.).

Non-Emergency. A specific operational training within Canada that the Reserve employee requests as part of their overall acquisition of military skill within their element (e.g., domestic sea operations involving Canada's Naval Reserve).

For purposes of this policy, activities such as parades or other special events will be considered under "Domestic Operations", even though they may not all take place in Canada.

International Operation. An event occurring outside of Canada that involves the Canadian Forces (including the Reserve Force), most notably peacekeeping and other humanitarian operations.

Pay and Benefits

Exercises. Pay and benefits will be maintained for the duration of the exercise.

Trade/Occupational Training. The company will maintain the employee's pay and benefits for a period not exceeding two weeks. While the company will protect the employee's job for periods exceeding two weeks, the company cannot guarantee that certain benefits will not be affected. Depending on the anticipated length of the leave, benefits such as pension, sick leave, life insurance, long term disability, etc., will be maintained at their current levels providing the employee makes the necessary arrangements for payment of the employee's share.

Domestic Operations. Pay and benefits will be maintained for domestic operations not exceeding two weeks. For periods exceeding two weeks, maintenance of benefits coverage is the employee's responsibility.

International Operations. The Company will protect the job of the employee while they are serving as part of an international operation; however, this leave will be considered a "leave of absence without pay". Under normal circumstances, benefits that the employee normally enjoys will not be maintained unless arrangements are made in advance by the employee to cover their costs. This can be done through a series of post-dated cheques or lump sum payment prior to departure.

Miscellaneous

Reimbursement. In cases where the Company has maintained the employee at full pay, the employee must arrange to turn over his/her military base pay upon his/her return to work (i.e., the number of days equivalent to those days upon which the employee would normally have been at work in the civilian workplace). The employee further agrees to turn over his/her military base pay in the event he/she does not return to work. (Civilian base pay is the normal base paid for a normal workweek, excluding overtime, shift differentials and other financial incentives.)

For those employees on commission, commissions will be paid for sales prior to the commencement of their military leave or for sales that may close during the leave, but negotiated prior to the leave.

The Company will deduct from accumulated pay any amount reimbursed by the employee to ensure that the employee does not pay income tax twice on that amount.

Job Postings. Employees on military leave for exercises, trade/occupational training or domestic operations are eligible for job postings, provided the military leave does not exceed a period of two weeks. Employees on military leave for international operations may not be eligible for consideration under the job posting program until they have returned to work on a full-time basis unless special arrangements are made prior to the employee's departure.

Bonuses and other Financial Incentive Programs. Bonuses or other financial incentive programs that are based on length of service are not affected by military leave for exercises, trade/occupational training or domestic operations of two weeks or less duration.

Employees on military leave longer than two weeks may not be eligible for the bonus or other financial incentive programs. Each case will be assessed and determined prior to the employee's departure.

Seniority. Seniority is not affected by military leave periods for exercises, trade/occupational training, domestic or international operations. For seniority purposes, the employee will be considered to have been employed throughout their leave period.

Vacation Entitlement. Vacation entitlement is not affected by military leave for exercises, trade/occupational training or domestic operations of two months duration or less.

Vacation entitlement for employees on longer leaves will be calculated as at the commencement of the leave period.

Procedure

Notification. All requests for military leave must be made in writing in accordance with the following paragraphs. Accordingly, the Company will respond in writing within two weeks of receipt. In cases where circumstances do allow for the required notice period, the employee is responsible for notification in accordance with procedures for reporting unexpected absences using the most expedient method available. Voicemail messages will not be considered.

Exercises. Employees requesting this category of leave must notify their supervisor in writing at least X (insert notification requirement) weeks prior to commencement of the exercise. The Company may also request a letter from the employee's unit Commanding Officer.

Trade/Occupational Training. Employees requesting this category of military leave must notify their supervisor in writing at least X (insert notification requirement) weeks prior to the commencement of the training period. The Company may also request a copy of the employee's confirmation document and/or a letter from the unit Commanding Officer.

Domestic Operation. The Company recognizes that requirements for personnel in this category of military leave may sometimes occur on short notice and written requests may not, in an emergency situation, be possible.

In the case of emergency operations, employees must notify their supervisor as soon as possible after being called upon by the military to participate in the operation, using those procedures laid down for reporting unexpected absences from work. The Company may also request a letter from the employee's unit Commanding Officer outlining the circumstances of the operation and the anticipated length of time that the employee will be engaged.

For non-emergency domestic operations, written notification must be submitted in the same manner as trade/occupational training requests.

International Operations. Employees considering applying for an international operation are advised to discuss their intentions with their supervisor prior to application. In cases where short notice is given by the military, written notice must be provided as soon as feasible. The Company may require additional information from the employee's commanding officer outlining the nature of the operation and the anticipated period of time required.

Sample Military Leave Policy: Reservist Employees

This sample Military Leave Policy is not intended to be all-inclusive. It is presented as a guide that may be tailored to meet any circumstance.

General

1. It is the policy of XYZ Corporation to comply fully with Provincial and Federal laws, rules, and regulations governing the employment, reinstatement, and career opportunities of XYZ Corporation employees who are members of Canada’s Reserve Force.

1.1. In the case that an applicable law conflicts with the stated Human Resource policy of XYZ Corporation, the applicable law shall take precedence.

Applicability

2. This policy shall apply to the following categories of XYZ Corporation employees for all types and categories of military service, whether performed voluntarily or involuntarily, on training or deployed domestically or internationally:

(a) Full- and part-time employees paid under hourly or salary pay scales;

(b) Limited-term contractual employees of XYZ Corporation for the term of the contract. If the term of employment ends during a period of military service, the individual will no longer be subject to this policy.

Prohibited actions

3. The following actions will not be tolerated by XYZ Corporation:

(a) No employee of XYZ Corporation shall discriminate against a XYZ Corporation employee covered under this policy in actions involving employment, reinstatement, or career opportunities based on the employee’s membership in a group covered under this policy;

(b) No officer or agent of XYZ Corporation shall discharge a XYZ Corporation employee covered under this policy because of his or her membership in Canada’s Reserve Force or performance of military service;

(c) No officer or agent of XYZ Corporation shall hinder or prevent a XYZ Corporation employee covered under this policy from performing his or her military service, and

(d) No officer or agent of XYZ Corporation shall dissuade a XYZ Corporation employee covered under this policy from enrolling in the Reserve Force by threat of loss of employment.

3.1. Individuals who take prohibited actions are subject to disciplinary action.

Military Leaves of Absence

4. Consistent with applicable laws, any XYZ Corporation employee performing military service shall be placed on a Military Leave of Absence for the duration of the period of the military service.

4.1. Periods of Military Leaves of Absence shall not count as an absence under the XYZ Corporation Attendance Policy.

Eligibility

5. In order to be eligible for reinstatement under this policy, a XYZ Corporation employee must:

(a) Have given notification of military service in accordance with Provincial and Federal legislation and paragraph 6 of this policy;

(b) Have served honourably in accordance with Provincial and Federal legislation for the period specified in that legislation;

(c) Have not exceeded the limit on military leaves of absence defined in Provincial and Federal Legislation, or have not met the period required between military leaves of absence, and

(d) Have applied for reinstatement in accordance with Provincial and Federal law and paragraph 8 of this policy.

Notification of the Requirement for Military Leave

6. It is the responsibility of each XYZ Corporation employee who is concurrently a member of a group covered under this policy to notify his or her first-line supervisor, manager, or worksite Human Resource Department of upcoming military service at the earliest possible juncture.

6.1. This notification may be in writing or may be given orally; however, to avoid confusion and potential conflicts, it is recommended that it be given in writing.

6.2. This notification must be provided as much in advance of the upcoming military service as possible.

Use of Vacation Days

7. No XYZ Corporation employee who is currently a member of a group covered under this policy shall be required to use vacation days for periods of military service. However, XYZ Corporation employees may voluntarily elect to use vacation days for periods of military service.

Application for Reinstatement

8. In accordance with Provincial and Federal legislation, a XYZ Corporation employee returning to work from any period of military service is required to apply for reinstatement by notifying his or her first-line supervisor, manager, or worksite Human Resource Department, as soon as is reasonably possible and no less than the number of days specified in the Federal or Provincial job protection legislation in advance of the last day of military service of their intent to return to work. This notification may be in writing or may be given orally; however, to avoid confusion and potential conflicts, it is recommended that it be given in writing.

8.1. The first-line supervisor, manager, or worksite Human Resource Department will ensure the employee is placed on the work schedule in a timely manner, in accordance with XYZ Corporation pay policies and collective agreements.

Failure to Apply for Reinstatement

9. Employees of the XYZ Corporation who fail to apply for reinstatement in accordance with Provincial and Federal law and this policy are subject to the XYZ Corporation Attendance Policy and the XYZ Corporation may take disciplinary action in accordance with the Attendance Policy to include termination for excessive absences.

Positions of Reinstatement

10. The XYZ Corporation will reinstate employees to the position held prior to the period of military service or to the position they would have attained had they not performed military service.

Continuation of Benefits

11. In accordance with Federal and Provincial job protection legislation, employees on a Military Leave of Absence will continue to accrue seniority and benefits based on seniority.

11.1. The XYZ Corporation will continue employee and family medical benefits for all periods of military service for which no coverage by the Canadian Armed Forces is available.

Continuation of Pay [5]

12. In accordance with Provincial and Federal Legislation, employees of the XYZ Corporation are placed on an unpaid Military Leave of Absence during periods of extended military service.

12.1. In addition, the XYZ Corporation grants each Reservist employee XX hours per year of paid Military Leave. While these hours are typically to be used for annual training, they may be used by a XYZ Corporation employee at their discretion for any period of military service.

12.2. During all other periods of military service, employees of the XYZ Corporation will be placed on an unpaid Military Leave of Absence.

Release for Military Service

13. XYZ Corporation employees with military service commitments will be released from work to allow time to prepare for their military service and to travel to the place of military service, with the release from work to be at a mutually agreed to date and time.

Responsibility for Substitute Workers

14. It is the responsibility of the first-line supervisor, manager, or worksite Human Resource Department to schedule substitute workers while an employee is on a Military Leave of Absence.

Payment of Bonuses and Incentives

15. XYZ Corporation employees who are concurrently members of a group covered under this policy shall be eligible for XYZ Corporation bonuses and incentives in accordance with company polices related to other paid and unpaid leave.

Protection from Discharge

16. No employee of the XYZ Corporation having returned from a period of military service shall be discharged from employment with the XYZ Corporation within the first six months after being reinstated by the XYZ Corporation, except for cause.

Resignation of Employment

17. No XYZ Corporation employee, upon notification to his or her first-line supervisor, manager, or worksite Human Resource Department of upcoming periods of military service, shall be required to resign from XYZ Corporation.

17.1. If reinstatement rights cannot be waived, voluntary letters of resignation submitted by an employee prior to a period of military service, or other notification of resignation based on pending military service, will not be accepted except in clearly defined exceptional circumstances. Individuals will be automatically placed on an unpaid Military Leave of Absence until their reinstatement by XYZ Corporation or expiration of their reinstatement rights.

Sample Military Leave Policy: Student Reservists

The following policy is intended to support students who are members of Canada’s Reserve Force. This institution has therefore adopted special provisions to ensure student Reservists are not disadvantaged academically or financially as a consequence of participation in military activities.

This policy details the process for special consideration to be granted to student Reservists with regard to attendance, availability of study materials, assessment requirements and refund of fees.

The granting of the following support for student Reservists will not compromise the academic integrity of this institution.

This policy applies to all students who are members of Canada’s Reserve Force. Recognizing that Reserve Service is voluntary except in extraordinary circumstances, this policy nevertheless acknowledges the contributions that Reservists make to this academic institution.

General

1. A student who is a member of Canada’s Reserves and as such wishes either

(a) to attend one or more training courses or military exercises per year, or

(b) to deploy on for full-time service either domestically or internationally as part of a sanctioned military operation, may be granted special consideration with regard to attendance, availability of study materials, assessment requirements, and refund of fees.

Application and Approval

2. The granting of special consideration under the provisions of this policy is subject to prior submission by the student to the institution of a written request for same, and subsequent approval by the institution of such a request.

2.1. Requests for special consideration are to be submitted by the student on the institution’s prescribed form of application as soon as is reasonably possible before the date of the training course, military exercise or full-time service and in compliance with the institution’s Academic Rules.

2.2. The institution may approve a request for special consideration by a student if, in its discretion, it determines that:

(a) the student is being, or has been, disadvantaged financially or academically as a result of participation in military activities;

(b) the disadvantage is so substantial as to warrant the granting of special consideration to the student by the institution; and

(c) the request has been submitted in compliance with the institution’s Academic Rules.

2.3. If such a request is approved by the institution, the student shall, as far in advance as is reasonably possible, provide the institution with a statement signed by his or her Commanding Officer detailing the date(s) and time(s) when attendance at the military exercise(s), training course(s) and/or full-time service is to take place.

2.4. Any requests or statements to be submitted by the student for the purposes of this policy are to be submitted by mail or hand-delivered to the Registrar’s Office at 123 XYZ Street, City, Province, A1B 2C3.

2.5. Students shall notify their instructors, Department or Faculty Head or academic advisor of their request for special consideration for any courses in which he or she is applying for such consideration, concurrently with the submission of an application to the Registrar’s office.

Implementation

3. In the event that the institution approves an application by a student for special consideration under the provisions of this policy, the institution shall have absolute discretion in determining what special considerations are to be granted and how to effect the implementation of such considerations.

3.1. The institution may grant one or any combination of the following types of special consideration upon approval of a request:

(a) a waiver of compulsory attendance requirements, provided that attendance is not crucial for any health or safety reasons, occupational or educational;

(b) the provision of learning materials in an alternate format than those normally provided if it is determined that the institution is reasonably able to develop or produce effective alternate learning materials for the student;

(c) a waiver of assessment requirements or extensions of assessment deadlines, not to exceed thirty days after the end of the study period, or alternatively, should the preceding options prove to be insufficient to remedy a disadvantage as described in paragraph 2.2(a), the institution may grant an allowance for the student to withdraw from courses or programs without penalty, including, but not limited to:

(i) a refund of tuition and fees associated with the course(s) or program(s), and

(ii) withdrawal without receiving a grade of “fail” for the course(s) or program(s).

3.2. The institution may reject any application or rescind any approvals made if, in its discretion, it finds that an application has failed to meet the requirements of this policy, including for reasons such as, but not limited to, the following:

(a) the application fails to demonstrate a need for special consideration as set out in paragraph 1;

(b) the application fails to identify the requirements for special consideration set out in paragraph 2.2;

(c) the student fails to submit the application or any documentation subsequently required in a reasonable amount of time in advance of the date(s) specified in paragraph 2.3: or

(d) the student is negligent, wilfully misleading or in non-compliance with the institution’s Academic Rules during any part of the application process.

3.3. After the institution has rendered a decision with regard to an application under the provisions of this policy, it is to provide notice of its decision and any other information relevant to it to the applicant and to the instructors for any courses in which the student has applied for special consideration.

3.4. The institution shall work with and assist instructors, Department, or Faculty Head or academic advisor, in a reasonable capacity, to implement any special considerations granted under this policy.

3.5. The rejection of an application by the institution does not preclude any instructor from providing any special consideration within their jurisdiction.

3.6. The granting of special consideration to a student under this policy does not in any way waive said student’s obligation to meet or follow any of the institution’s Academic Rules, unless explicitly stated in the notice given to the student regarding the approval of his or her application.

 


 

[1] An emergency is defined by the National Defence Act as “an insurrection, riot, invasion, armed conflict or war, real or apprehended.”

[2] Examples of recent international deployments include Afghanistan, Bosnia and Sierra Leone. Domestic operations include the Vancouver 2010 Olympics and the 1998 Ice Storm in Eastern Canada.

[3] The federal legislation (Bill C40) was passed in April 2008 and included amendments to the Canada Student Loans Act.

[4] CFLC conducts visits to military installations as part of its ExecuTrek program.

[5] This provision is optional, and may be handled in a variety of ways. A company may wish to continue to pay an employee on military leave, or to “top up” salary where a differential exists between the military and civilian pay scales.

 

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