Remembrance Day is not a general paid holiday under the Labour Standards Code and it is not a designated closing day under the Retail Business Designated Day Closing Act. It has its own legislation, the Remembrance Day Act, which includes rules prohibiting many businesses from operating on November 11 and rules about holiday pay for employees who work on that day.
Key Features of the Remembrance Day Act:
The Remembrance Day Act does not apply to the following types of businesses:
This means that November 11 is a regular business day for these types of businesses.
Many retail businesses must be closed on November 11; however, the following retail businesses are allowed to operate that day:
Note, other retail businesses can operate until 6 am on Remembrance Day to finish a regular shift that started the previous day and they can operate after 9:00 pm on Remembrance Day to begin a regular shift that continues into the next day.
The Act also prohibits non-retail businesses and services from operating on Remembrance Day, with a variety of exceptions including, for example, hospitals, policing, fire services, transportation, fish and meat packing, dairy production and direct delivery to customers, newspaper publishing, and brokers licensed under the Securities Act.
Sale of Alcohol and Entertainment
The Act prohibits the sale of alcohol and performances (e.g., sports, entertainment) before 12 o’clock noon on Remembrance Day.
Period of Silence
Business and services that are permitted to operate on Remembrance Day must suspend operations for 3 minutes starting at 10:59 am on November 11.
Holiday with pay rules
Employees of businesses to which the Act applies earn a day off with pay if:
Employees do not earn premium pay (e.g., time and a half) for the time worked on the holiday under the Remembrance Day Act. However, employers may provide a greater benefit of premium pay under a contract of employment (e.g., a collective agreement).
The Remembrance Day holiday rules are quite different than the general holiday rules in the Labour Standards Code. For example, employees have to actually work on Remembrance Day to qualify for the holiday. This is not the case for general holidays under the Code. Another example, employers cannot substitute a different day than November 11 for the Remembrance Day holiday. Employers can substitute different dates for the general holidays under the Code provided they meet certain criteria.
Administering the Remembrance Day Rules
The Labour Standards Division is responsible for administering the holiday with pay provisions of the Act. If you have questions about these provisions, please call us at toll free 1-888-315-0110; or 424-4311.
The Department of Justice is responsible for administering the closing provisions of the Act. Businesses with questions about whether they can operate on Remembrance Day should consult the Remembrance Day Act, and seek legal advice if necessary.