Saskatoon Office
10th Floor
Sturdy Stone Building
122 3rd Avenue North
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
S7K 2H6
Regina Office
1600 – 1920 Broad Street
Regina, Saskatchewan
S4P 3V2
(306)787-2406 (telephone)
(306)787-2664 (fax)

COVID-19 NOTICE, dated November 19, 2020:

This directive replaces the Saskatchewan Labour Relations Board notice respecting COVID-19, dated October 19, 2020.

Background:

The Saskatchewan Labour Relations Board continues to take steps to safeguard the health of our staff and the public, while maintaining meaningful access to justice, as circumstances allow.

The Board will continue to monitor the situation and will update this notice as necessary. Please consult the Board’s website from time to time to obtain the most up to date information on the Board’s operations.

Updated public health orders can be found here: https://www.saskatchewan.ca/government/health-care-administration-and-provider-resources/treatment-procedures-and-guidelines/emerging-public-health-issues/2019-novel-coronavirus/public-health-measures/public-health-orders

The five-stage plan for re-opening the economy can be found here: https://www.saskatchewan.ca/government/news-and-media/2020/april/23/reopen-saskatchewan-plan

Board Operations:

Video Hearings – Video hearings will be the default procedure for matters with contested evidence unless and until otherwise notified. The Board has put in place Guidelines for the Conduct of Video Hearings before the Board. See, http://www.sasklabourrelationsboard.com/Default.aspx?DN=3f60e534-6f36-49db-91c8-4f0f1d99c031.

If one or more parties to a matter believe(s) that a video hearing is not procedurally fair, the party or parties shall submit a plan for the conduct of the hearing in-person [“Plan”]. The Plan shall include:

  • Explanation of why the video hearing is not procedurally fair, specific to the case;
  • Verification that the party submitting the Plan has reviewed the Guidelines for the Conduct of Video Hearings;
  • Verification that the parties have discussed video hearings as an option and have discussed the Plan;
  • An indication whether the opposite party consents to the Plan or parts of the Plan;
  • Verification that the party or parties will follow the attached Guidelines for the Conduct of In-Person Hearings http://www.sasklabourrelationsboard.com/Default.aspx?DN=3fdc3669-2542-4ea1-93a5-f4cc41a7d15d, unless alternative processes are proposed in the Plan, and granted by the Board;
  • A proposal for specific measures to ensure compliance with the attached Guidelines for the Conduct of In-Person Hearings, or where proposing to depart from those Guidelines, a proposal for specific measures to address all of the health and safety considerations raised in those Guidelines;
  • For greater clarity, the proposal for specific measures in the Plan must include at a minimum:
    • an estimated number of attendees;
    • a seating plan for attendees;
    • a plan for the seating and/or access to the hearing of witnesses waiting to testify;
    • the travel requirements of participants if travelling from outside of the city at which the hearing is proposed to be heard;
    • an indication of whether any participants will participate by alternative means, including technological requirements;
    • if proposing to include individuals who fall into the Exclusions in the Guidelines for the Conduct of In-Person Hearings, specific measures to address public health concerns; and
    • the party’s preference for either the Regina or Saskatoon hearing rooms;
  • Acknowledgment that, due to changing circumstances, the in-person hearing could be adjourned at any time;
  • Any other considerations that the Board may bring to the parties’ attention following the issuance of this notice and/or after the submission of the Plan.

The following process will apply to the Plans:

  • For matters that are set for scheduling on December Motions Day, the Plan shall be submitted and served on opposite parties no later than November 24. Opposite parties shall serve and file a reply to the Plan within 3 business days.
  • For a matter yet to be scheduled for a hearing, the Board will determine whether it would be procedurally unfair  to proceed with a video hearing, and if it so determines, then the Board will review the Plan and determine whether the matter can be set for an in-person hearing according to the Plan, or according to any other fair and practicable in-person or hybrid process. Alternatively, the Board will order a video hearing in compliance with the Guidelines for the Conduct of Video Hearings, or will order further case management.

If a Plan is not submitted, the matter will be scheduled and/or will proceed as a video hearing in compliance with the Guidelines for the Conduct of Video Hearings.

Appeals – All appeals will proceed by video, or if video is not practicable, by phone, unless otherwise notified. Where applicable, applications for fresh evidence must be filed 14 days in advance of the appeal hearing. Proposed fresh evidence must be attached to an affidavit.

Case Management Conferences – The Board continues to triage matters through case management to assist the parties with process and scheduling. If the Board has not scheduled a matter for case management, one or more parties may request case management.

For matters involving self-represented litigants, the Board will exercise discretion in requiring case management to determine the appropriate hearing procedure.

Existing Phone Hearings - All matters scheduled to be heard by phone will proceed as scheduled.

Written Applications – All applications proceeding by way of written submissions continue to be processed as usual.

New Applications and Appeals – The Board continues to receive applications, appeals, and other submissions provided for under the Act and the Regulations. See “Board Office”, below, for more information.

Interim Applications - The Board remains available for interim applications of an urgent nature. The Applicant is expected to set out preferred process (phone, video, or in-person). If in-person, the applicant is expected to submit a Plan with the application. The opposite party will have three business days to reply. The Board will prioritize addressing these Plans as quickly as possible.

Board Office - Access to the Board office in Regina remains restricted.

Communication with the Board can be conducted via telephone, email, mail, or fax. The Board’s main phone line remains open. Parties are encouraged to file documents electronically during this time. Documents can be hand-delivered through the Board's mail slot and the Board will continue to receive documents by mail and courier. Note that the processing of applications may be delayed by up to one day. As a reminder, documents cannot be filed at the Board’s address in Saskatoon.

You may also contact the Board electronically by using the “contact us” form - http://www.sasklabourrelationsboard.com/contactmail.

This Notice is subject to change from time to time and may be amended to apply to specific circumstances, at the discretion of the Board.

Saskatchewan Labour Relations Board, November 19, 2020