Feedback for Exemptions and Exclusions Under the Employment Standards Act

Pharmacist  ·  Nov. 18, 2017

I do not believe the decision to include Pharmacist under ESA or not will impact quality of care nor patient safety, as I am confident that the OCP standard of practice and patient care process is still there to govern the practice standards. Then, we need to then beg the question, how does this impact us as a professional at core? We all need to think about the intent of ESA at its roots and the relationship it governs. It governs the relationship between employers and employees and NOT between professionals and the public. This is another reason why I do not believe including pharmacist would be effective at fundamental paradigm shift in employer and employee relationship. When you weigh both relationships, as a professional I will always stand for my patients over my employer. Secondly, ESA is to govern human rights and not necessarily professional rights. Which means if we are including pharmacists to the mix, it should be extended to all other professionals such as physicians, lawyers, accountants, etc. So, it's all or non for professionals - we cannot select certain professionals only because the work circumstances are different. My vote is, if we are extending ESA to pharmacists, then we must consider extending to other employee professionals. If you are working in an environment where you believe that it doesn't allow you to sufficiently manage your breaks, meals and well being to put patient at harm, we as professionals need to make a choice whether to continue to work in that environment. That choice is ours. All I want to voice is that this is a complex and sophisticated topic that we will need to work through as both governing and professional body and this notion of ESA inclusion or not is not even close to addressing the continuous improvement that we need to provide better care for Canadians. It goes beyond whether or not there is 15 min break or 30 min lunch. Today, I would like to provide my challenge to all fellow pharmacists to think holistically and look beyond the overly simplified question of whether or not pharmacists should be eligible for stats pay or not.

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