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This is for Ontario Canada, post-2019.

I want to know exactly what the law is for breaks in Ontario. I understand that you are entitled to a half hour break for every 5 hours of work. (or two breaks that equal 30 minutes if agreed by the worker and employer)

The Ministry of Labour of Ontario's website sates "Employees are entitled to an uninterrupted 30-minute eating period after no more than five consecutive hours of work." So if the employee has an 8-hour shift, they can't work more than 5 hours without a break.

Ontario.ca states "An employee must not work for more than five hours in a row without getting a 30-minute eating period (meal break) free from work."

What I want to know exactly is the "more than" part. So, I can agree that everyone who works more than 5 hours is entitled to a break. What about employees who work exactly 5 hours? If their shift ends after the fifth hour, are they still entitled to a break?

Is there also a section in the little green book that specifies this? Like the actual clause / legislation / law?

  • What does this actually mean? At the end of your shift, you can take as long as you like for a meal, or for any other activity. – Tim Lymington May 2 '19 at 10:00
  • @TimLymington well yes obviously. I'm asking if a worker is entitled to a break if the only work 5 hours. As the law says "more than". Just want clarification. – Jordan Howard May 4 '19 at 0:28
  • Still doesn't make sense as asked, I'm afraid: By the letter of the law, a shift of 5 hours 5 minutes has to be broken; the employer could say "5 hours work, meal break, then 5 minutes work to finish" For a 5 hour shift, they could say "5 hours work, then take as long as you like for meal/sleeping/travelling break". The confusion may stem from your reading "break" as "paid break", which is not in the citation. – Tim Lymington May 4 '19 at 10:45

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