One of our employees has been summoned for jury duty in mid-December. I wasn’t up to speed on the rules surrounding employed people who are required to sit on a jury so I did some checking. The latest information I could find was some research done in February of this year. It turns out that if you need time away from work to serve, the most generous place is Quebec where that province pays jurors $103 for each full or half day of service increasing to $160 on the 57th day plus jurors are reimbursed for travel, accommodation, parking and meals. Judges decide on allowances for child care. Next door in Ontario, the first 10 days are unpaid followed by $40 in days 11 to 49 and $100 per day after that. There is no allowance for parking, meals, transit or child care. In Saskatchewan, jurors are compensated at the rate of $80 per day or partial day from day one onward and may be compensated for travel, accommodation, meals and parking. It’s much worse in Manitoba where jurors are paid nothing for the first 10 days followed by $30 per day afterward plus they may be reimbursed for expenses. In all provinces, employers must grant the employee a leave of absence but are not required to pay that person while away except in Newfoundland and Labrador where jurors are not compensated by the province. Can you be excused from jury duty? Yes you can but you need a good reason. As a Canadian citizen, it is our civic duty to serve on a jury if summoned. It’s a small price to pay for living in a democracy where we expect law and order to prevail.
That’s Coffeetalk. I’m Vic Dubois.