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Weekly Rest

Nova Scotia

Weekly Rest and Sunday Closing

Am I entitled to a day of rest from work each week?

In Nova Scotia in industrial sectors employees are entitled to at least twenty-four consecutive hours of rest each week. Employers are obliged to attempt to let all employees have the same rest period and to try to grant the day of rest on Sunday.

In all other sectors employees are entitled to twenty-four consecutive hours of rest.

An employer may require more than six consecutive days of work, but only in an emergency and only for a period required to ensure that there is no serious interference with regular operations.

The Director of Employment Standards may issue an order to exempt an employer from this regulation provided there’s an arrangement to substitute for the day of rest.

Is my workplace allowed to open on Sunday?

Yes; retail establishments are permitted to open on Sundays, Easter Sunday and other holidays which fall on a Sunday remain retail business holidays.

Who determines if my workplace can be open on Sunday?

It is left to the discretion of the establishment.

Do I have to work on Sunday if requested to do so by my employer?

No, employees have the right to refuse work on Sundays.

Does my municipality (town, city, etc.) have the power to permit my workplace to open on Sunday?


What legislation determines the day of rest and Sunday openings?

The right to a day of rest and to refuse Sunday work is provided in the Employment Standards Act. The Retail Business Uniform Closing Act provides the above regulations.

How do I make a complaint about my work situation?

Learn more about making a complaint in your jurisdiction

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