Policy 9b - Sick Leave

Approved Executive Committee of the Board of Governors 67.23

SICK LEAVE

PRINCIPLE

1. The University seeks to provide appropriate financial security for its support staff on leave because of illness or long-term disability.

OBJECTIVES

2. In accordance with the above principle, the University has set out the following objectives:

  • a) to attract, retain and motivate competent support staff;
  • b) to ensure that the Employment Standards Act, the Unemployment Insurance Act, and the standards for non-discrimination are respected;
  • c) to establish and administer verification systems to minimize absenteeism;
  • d) to familiarize members of the support staff with the policy and the control systems;
  • e) to ensure that an employee on long-term disability leave receives efficient service from the insurer.

SICK LEAVE

ELIGIBILITY

3. Only support staff members holding a regular position (1S4) which involves fifteen hours of work or more per week for eight months or more are eligible for the following indemnity:

  • a) One hundred per cent of the regular basic salary for one hundred and nineteen calendar days, starting on the first day of total disability, resulting from an accident or an illness; this applies to each disability resulting from a different cause, including complications resulting from a pregnancy.
  • b) Sick leave benefits are payable for one hundred and nineteen calendar days or for a period which ends on the employment termination date, whichever period is shorter.

4. Support staff members holding a term position (1S6) which involves fifteen hours of work or more per week for a predetermined and uninterrupted period of three months or more but less than twelve months are eligible to the following indemnity:

  • a) One hundred per cent of the regular basic salary during the number of days of accumulated sick leave credited to each employee.
  • For these employees, sick leave accumulates at the rate of one half day per month starting on the first day of employment. These accumulated days can never be reimbursed or transferred to a subsequent term of employment at the University.

CONDITIONS

5. Eligible employees who become totally disabled may collect benefits on the following conditions:

  • a) Immediately after the start of a period of disability, the employee or his/her representative must inform the immediate superior of the expected length of absence.
  • Should the employee be working shifts, the immediate superior must be advised of the absence at least two hours before the start of the employee's regular shift.
  • b) Before the period of disability exceeds five working days, a sick leave form must be submitted to the dean or director for approval. A copy of the form must be sent immediately to Human Resources Service. The University has a medical certificate which an employee can present to his/her doctor. The certificate is available at both Health Services and Human Resources Service.
  • c) Medical certificates are required in the following cases:
    • i) when sick leave exceeds three consecutive working days;
    • ii) when the employee's sick leave records cast serious doubt on the validity of the declaration even when the sick leave is for less than three consecutive working days.
  • d) Any time during sick leave, the dean or director, jointly with the Director of Human Resources Service, may require the employee to undergo medical examination by a university-appointed doctor to determine whether the employee is eligible for sick leave benefits or is fit to go back to work.
  • e) An employee who takes sick leave for reasons which prove to be unjustified is subject to disciplinary measures which could lead to dismissal.
  • f) In normal work related circumstances the University's sick leave plan is not intended to allow an employee to benefit from a period of therapeutic rest for the simple reason of anxiety, fatigue, stress or for other similar reasons resulting from personality conflicts with his/her superior or from legitimate disciplinary measures or for any other similar reason as determined by the Director of Human Resources Service.

6. CONFIDENTIALITY

  • a) In order to protect confidentiality, medical certificates as stipulated in article 5 must be directly forwarded by the employee to Human Resources Service.
  • b) The employee does not have to divulge neither the nature of the illness nor the name of the treating physician to his/her supervisors.

RENEWAL OF THE SICK LEAVE BENEFIT PERIOD

7. To have the maximum 119-day sick leave period renewed, the University may require a certificate of good health which is to be granted by the attending physician and an employee who has received sick leave benefits must:

  • a) return to work for one complete working day in the case of a disability resulting from a totally different cause;
  • b) return to work for thirty consecutive calendar days if the disability results from the same cause. During this 30-day period the employee cannot take vacation leave.

RESTRICTIONS

8. An employee who misses work after receiving a notice of termination of employment is not eligible for sick leave benefits unless he/she provides a certificate of disability granted by a doctor and accepted by the Director of Human Resources Service.

9. Sick leave benefits cannot be accumulated and are never reimbursable.

10. Sick leave benefits are reduced by the amount of the benefits provided by an accident protection plan or by the amount of similar accident or sickness benefits, excluding unemployment insurance, for which the employee is eligible by virtue of a government or private agency program.

INSURANCE FOR LONG-TERM DISABILITY

ELIGIBILITY

11. Only employees holding a regular (1S4) position which involves fifteen hours of work or more per week for eight months or more are eligible for the long-term disability insurance plan.

BENEFITS

12. The benefits awarded to eligible employees are described in the long-term disability insurance policy in effect at the University; these benefits are calculated starting on the one hundred and twentieth calendar day of disability.

13. Upon meeting the requirements of the policy, an employee who is covered can collect the benefits provided by the policy after having received regular sick leave benefits for the period of one hundred and nineteen calendar days.

14. An employee who does not meet the requirements of the policy cannot collect further sick leave benefits, and whatever time off he/she takes afterward is automatically considered as leave without pay, as defined by the policy in effect.

15. When a doctor declares that an employee is not likely to return to work, the employee shall normally receive a cash reimbursement for accumulated annual vacation leave.

16. All the employee benefits to which an employee participates will be maintained without cost to him/her during a long-term disability period.

TOTAL DISABILITY

17. In accordance with this policy, total disability applies to an employee who is completely incapacitated because of an injury, an illness, complications resulting from a pregnancy, or a mental disorder. Such an employee is unable to carry out the duties of his/her regular position during the waiting period of disability and for the following 24 months. Afterward, the employee is unable to perform the duties of a position for which he/she is, or could be, reasonably qualified by virtue of his/her level of instruction, training, and/or experience.

REHABILITATION

18. The University encourages an employee to return to work part-time in cases where the insurance company, jointly with the employee's doctor, approves such a return.

19. In such cases the employee and the University are to pay their respective contribution to maintain the employee's participation in the various benefit plans.

DRUG ADDICTION AND ALCOHOLISM

20. When disability stems from drug addiction or alcoholism, the benefits provided by this policy are to be granted only during the leave required for the treatment of these conditions by a physician or another specialist approved by the University.

RESTRICTIONS

21. Sick leave benefits provided by this policy cannot be granted under the following circumstances:

  • a) when the sickness or injury has been voluntarily self inflicted for the sole purpose of benefiting from the provisions of this policy;
  • b) pregnancy (however, complications arising from the pregnancy are covered by this policy, upon presentation of a medical certificate);
  • c) when an employee is also collecting vacation pay;
  • d) when an employee wilfully takes part in riots, wars, or violent demonstrations;
  • e) when the sickness or injury occurred, while the employee was committing a criminal act for which a duly authorized court of law has found him/her guilty, or while he/she was serving a prison sentence.

ANNUAL VACATION LEAVE

22. Though an employee cannot collect sick leave and vacation leave benefits simultaneously, a dean or director, in consultation with the Director of Human Resources Service, may agree to have the employee's vacation leave replaced by sick leave, thus allowing the employee to collect sick leave benefits. This can be done, however, only in exceptional circumstances such as accidents, hospitalization, and so on. Requests for such changes in leave must always be accompanied by a medical certificate.

INTERPRETATION

23. The Director of Human Resources Service is responsible for the interpretation of this policy.

APPLICATION

24. The present policy applies to employees and/or situations not covered by provisions of a collective agreement unless otherwise stated.

EXCEPTION

25. No exception may be made to this policy without the written consent of the Vice-Rector, Resources.

Revised December 10, 2003

(Human Resources)

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