Laid off employee refused to come back
We have a business that was shut down in March. We are still mandated to be closed.
We had employee that we had to lay off in mid March as there was no business activity, so ROE was issued with Shortage of Work code (no temp lay off).
We are about to open again in 2 weeks and called our employee with such great news.
Employee simply stated that he is not coming back as he's got a friends's child (10-11 yo) to take care of until September.
I asked him to send me official email.
A day later he sends me Leave of Absence request until September due to child care issues (he has 2 adult kids himself and not dependent on him).
We have to find his replacement asap and we already posted the ad and have numerous applicants.
Our business cannot go on without huge complications if a replacement is not hired asap..
We had few issues with him (and our clients because of this employee) in the past so we were about to fire this person (with verbal and written warnings).
QUESTION: ARE WE OBLIGATED TO TAKE HIM BACK IN SEPTEMBER after legislation was changed due to Covid -19 ????? (even though he was laid off officially)