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Employment Standards charges laid against Red Deer companies; Complaints originally received from 7 temporary foreign workers

News Release

Employment Standards charges laid against Red Deer companies

A number of charges for violations of Alberta’s Employment Standards Code have been laid against three businesses operating along Gasoline Alley in Red Deer.

The charges stem from complaints originally received in 2014 from seven temporary foreign workers employed at the Econo Lodge Inn & Suites. They include:

  • Failure to comply with a notice to provide employment records (Section 126(a))
  • Obstructing an officer in the exercise of their duty by advising employees not to co-operate and/or give false statements (Section 126(b))
  • Falsifying employment records and giving false/misleading information to an investigating officer (Section 126(c))
  • Failure to keep employment records as required (Section 128(d))

The charges were sworn and laid on May 27 against the numbered companies operating as Econo Lodge Inn & Suites, Holiday Liquor Store and Winks convenience store, as well as corporate directors Varinder Sidhu and Ravinder Sidhu.

Following the initial complaint and investigation that involved the RCMP, Alberta Employment Standards determined that more than $83,000 in earnings was owed to the employees. The employer subsequently paid the outstanding earnings plus more than $8,000 in Order of Officer fees. The employees involved have found other work.

The maximum penalty for these offences is $100,000 for a corporation or $50,000 for an individual.

This is the second case since 2009 in which Employment Standards has pursued charges under the Employment Standards Code. In November 2014 an employer was charged for alleged offences involving a 14-year-old worker. That case is currently before the courts.

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