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Message from Bill Kroll, Chief Financial Officer and Assistant Deputy Minister, Management Sector

Update # 15: April 30 – Planning for the next steps

As provinces and territories begin to roll out their plans for a phased reopening, there are many questions on everyone’s minds: When can Justice resume regular operations? Will we all come back together or in stages, and who will return first? Will our buildings be safe?

Planning is now underway to help ensure that we have a smooth and safe transition back to regular operations. While there are still many unknowns, there are a number of things that are reasonably certain:

I would also like to highlight a couple of specific items.

Litigation work: If you work in this area, you know that many courts and tribunals across the country are increasingly setting hearings to be held by teleconference or videoconference. In-person hearings may also need to take place, depending on the circumstances. Please know the COVID-19 Tiger Team is working with National Litigation Sector management and its Digital Litigation Working Group to ensure that our impacted employees have the tools they need and are safe when fulfilling their professional duties.

Access to leave code 699: As jurisdictions begin to lift restrictions, we will do our best to support staff through the transition. For example, employees in the Quebec region who are not yet comfortable sending their children back to daycare or school will continue to have access to “Other Paid Leave” (leave code 699) if they are unable to telework.

As circumstances change, we will all need to be flexible and ready to adapt to new realities and potentially some setbacks. I will keep you informed of important decisions and resources. We appreciate your patience as we develop the details of our approach, and as government-wide direction rolls out from TBS.

Other Departmental Updates

I want to conclude with a special thank you to the COVID-19 Tiger Team, which includes representatives from several key areas across the Department, aimed at keeping our operations running. This group has worked tirelessly over the last couple of months to address employee needs and keep us safe in very difficult circumstances. We greatly appreciate your ongoing work.

Thank you all, and take good care.

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