Standby/ Call-In/ Emergency Situations Pay – Guidelines for Implementation
This policy applies to non-union employees Wage Grade 8 and below.
- employees where the nature of the business is emergency service, i.e. Fire and Ambulance. On December 7, 2001 the Workforce Strategy Team approved that the exclusion applies only to those positions that directly provide emergency services.
- employees in operations where historically standby and call-in pay are not the norm, i.e. Homes for the Aged, Social Services, Shelter Housing and Support, Children’s Services, Social Development and Administration.
Employees excluded under the policy will not be compensated for standby, call-in or emergency situations.
- General managers/executive directors/division heads or their designates are responsible for assigning employees to standby status through formal communication giving the exact dates and times.
- Employees should be given as much advance notice as possible. In some divisions this may include establishing rotating schedules.
- Employees should be provided with a pager or cell-phone where necessary to ensure they can be contacted.
- Employees who normally carry pagers or cell phones should be informed through formal communication that they are not automatically on standby status.
- Divisions can distribute the responsibility for standby status amongst all qualified employees or ask for volunteers to be on standby status.
- Employees must be no further from their work sites than the distance they usually travel to work, unless other arrangements have been made for them to do their work from a remote location. The division may decide that the employee needs to be close to the work site while on standby due to operational requirements.
- Employees may be required to leave home or the place where they are contacted and travel to a specific work site to deal with situations.
- Alternatively, employees may be required to deal with problems by working from home e.g. using a computer and modem. The policy states that this is considered as call-in, as appropriate. This means each situation is dealt with on a case-by-case basis and divisions should clarify with their employees what will be considered eligible for call-in pay when working from home. For example, a division may decide that if a very brief phone call or short email solves the problem, the response would not warrant full call-in pay. The employee would receive the standby pay only. For situations where a more substantial response is required, the employee would be compensated for call-in even though the work was being done from home using a phone or modem. Call-in can apply when working from home as well as when the employee reports to another location.
- Employees may be called in to work even if they are not on standby status.
- Where an employee is required to stay at work beyond his/her regular hours to deal with an emergency situation (for which he/she would have been called in had he/she left the workplace), call-in pay arrangements apply.
Salary and Benefits
- Standby, call-in and emergency situations pay is not considered lieu time.
- Compensation for standby and call-in hours is paid out.
- There is no maximum on standby and call-in pay.
- Employees on an acting assignment in a non-union position will be paid according to this policy from the effective date of the assignment.
- If contact cannot be made with an employee who is on standby status or if that employee fails to perform the work required, that employee is not eligible for standby or call-in pay.
- Employees who are required to be on standby status, whether or not they are called into work are eligible for standby pay.
- Employees are paid one hour for every eight hours or less, while on standby status, on a straight time basis.
- Employees who are called in to a work site or required to work from a remote location are eligible for call-in pay
- Employees do not have to be on standby status to receive call-in pay
- Employees called in to work are paid a minimum of three hours at their normal overtime rate under the lieu time policy:
- Employees eligible only for lieu time at straight time, shall be paid at straight time.
- Employees eligible for lieu time or pay, at time and a half, shall be paid at time and a half.
- Pay for work performed is counted from the time employees arrive at the work site.
- Work performed from home by employees on standby is considered as call-in, as appropriate, and employees are compensated for hours worked.
- Employees who are on standby and are called in to work receive both standby and call-in pay.
Emergency Situations pay
Where an employee is required to stay at work beyond his/her regular hours to deal with an emergency situation (for which he/she would have been called in had he/she left the workplace), call-in pay arrangements apply as described in ‘Call-In Pay’. For example: a water pipe bursts at 5:30 p.m. and the employee is still at work even though his workday normally ends at 5 p.m. If the incident had occurred at 7 p.m., the employee would have been called in from home (whether or not he was on standby). The employee will be paid under the emergency situations provision of this policy.
The standby and call-in pay provisions apply to all times when staff are assigned to standby or when called-in, including evenings, weekends and statutory holidays. There is no higher standby or call-in rate paid for statutory holidays. Standby and call-in pay for statutory holidays is in addition to normal statutory holiday pay, so an employee who is not working that day gets paid for the day off, plus 1 hour for every eight hours of scheduled standby, plus any call-in time as appropriate.
Mileage and transit costs related to call-in, whether the employee is reporting for call-in to his/her own worksite or a different one, may only be claimed in accordance with normal workday practices. That is, the same practice for claiming mileage/transit costs that applies for a normal workday applies for call-in.
- For example, an employee does not get reimbursed for mileage and transit costs to report to their own worksite for a regular day’s work, so they can’t claim these costs when called-in.
- If an employee is asked to report to another worksite at the beginning of the call-in, the division’s practice for reimbursing mileage and transit costs when an employee is asked to report to another worksite at the beginning of a regular workday would apply.
- If an employee reports on call-in, either to his/her own worksite or a different worksite, and during the call-in period has to travel to another site, typically the regular workday practice is to reimburse the employee for the site-to-site mileage/transit costs. If the division’s normal workday practice is different from this, then the normal workday practice should apply to call-in.
Standby and Call-in while Ill, on Vacation or absent from the workplace
While it is recognized that divisions need to manage the scheduling and approval of standby and call-in according to their own business needs, as normal practice, standby and call-in should be assigned to employees who are actively at work. Employees who are ill, on vacation or absent from the workplace (e.g. bereavement leave, float holiday) should not be scheduled for standby or called-in.
- To be on standby, the employee must be able to report to a work location if necessary when called-in; not all situations can be handled from an off-site location. An employee who is unable to attend work due to illness would not be able to report to a worksite on call-in. In the case of illness, standby and call-in duties should be reassigned to employees who are actively at work, i.e. not absent on sick time.
- While many employees absent from the workplace (e.g. on vacation or a float holiday) could be available to respond to a call-in, this time off is intended for rest and relaxation. This doesn’t preclude situations where it’s unavoidable and someone on an absence from the workplace could be scheduled for standby or called-in because there is no one else available; however this should be the exception, not the norm.
Recording and approval procedures
An employee who has worked standby, call-in or emergency hours must submit a Request for Payment form to his/her manager for approval.
- the person giving the approval must print their name and then sign the form.
- Time entry staff should be advised not to process requests that are not made on this form.
- These steps are built in for audit purposes and to ensure the requests and approvals are appropriately processed.
- Once approved, the original form is sent to the timekeeper for the division for entry.
- A copy of the form is kept by the employee and by the manager who approved the request.
- It is recommended that each division develop an internal tracking form for assigning and recording standby, call-in and emergency situations hours worked. This tracking form can be used to verify the requests for payment.
Examples of how to calculate payment for various situations
- An employee is on standby status from Friday 4:30 p.m. until the following Monday 8:30 a.m.; i.e. 64 hours. She is not called in to work.
- She receives 8 hour’s pay at straight time. One hours’ pay for 8 periods of 8 hours.
- An employee is on standby status from 4:30 p.m. until midnight, Thursday. He is called at 7:00 p.m. and is required to come in to work. He arrives at his worksite at 7:30 p.m. and works on site for one hour. His call-in work totals 1 hour. His normal rate of overtime compensation is time and a half.
- He receives 1 hour’s pay for standby at straight time and 3 hour’s call-in pay at time and a half (4.5 hours). His total pay is for 5.5 hours.
- An employee who is not on standby status is called in for an emergency situation. He is at his cottage but can deal with the problem by working on his laptop. He works for 7 hours to resolve the problem. His normal rate of overtime is straight time.
- He receives 7 hour’s pay plus reimbursement for any long distance costs.
- An employee is on standby status from 4:30 p.m. Friday to 8:30 a.m. on Monday i.e. 64 hours. The employee is called in on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. He is called in again on Saturday from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. and again on Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to noon. His normal rate of overtime is straight time.
- He receives 8 hours pay for standby at straight time. He receives 4 hours pay for the Saturday morning call-in; 3 hours pay for the Saturday evening call-in and 3 hours pay for the Sunday call-in. His total pay is 18 hours; 8 hrs. standby pay +10 hours call-in pay at straight time.
- An employee has not left the office. He is called to deal with an operational emergency for which he would have been called in had he gone home. He works 3 hours past his regular day. His normal overtime rate is time and a half.
- In this emergency situation he is paid for 4.5 hours.
June 15, 2001
Standby/Call-In/Emergency Situations Reporting Form