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By Raissa

Victoria Day: Hail to the Queen!

By Spencer Yarnell, Head of Spreading the Herd Word

Cheers to the ole gal! She’s great ain’t she?

As you know the Victoria Day long weekend is fast approaching and this member of the IBEX Herd is looking to celebrate in style. Be that a lounging barbeque, an escape to the lake or all these things with the companionship of beverages.

But why do we celebrate? Besides the fact that this is one of the first long weekends where we can celebrate outside without being swaddled in pounds of coats and sweaters, it’s also a tip of the hat to Queen Victoria herself whose birthday was May 24th. Back in good ole 1901 when Queen Victoria passed, the British Empire declared by royal decree that May 24th be Empire Day – which in Canada came to be known as Victoria Day. The actual day of the holiday wasn’t set (there were a lot of royal decrees, tiresome stuff really) until 1953 when it became the first Monday before May 25th.

Queen Victoria
Queen Victoria photographed by Alexander Bassano (1882)

Victoria Day is a nationwide banking holiday which means all Monday payrolls will be moved to Friday, May 18th and as a consequence we ask that all input and numbers be in by Wednesday, May 16th to prevent finger wagging. Here at IBEX, we take our Queens and our holidays quite seriously, so you should know that our office will be closed on Monday, May 21st to allow the Herd some sober ruminations on the effects and consequences of monarchy. We’ll be back on Tuesday May 22nd at 8 AM.

The IBEX Herd won’t be alone in absconding from work seeing as most stores and retail in Manitoba will be closed since Victoria Day is a general holiday. That means you can all join us in the fun!

In Manitoba, workers who do work Victoria Day are entitled to 1.5 times their regular pay in addition to 5% of their earnings in the 28 days leading up to Victoria Day, not a bad gig. Businesses who are closed on the holiday must still pay employees 5% of all their earnings in the last 28 days prior.

Since provinces are all different and can hardly agree on anything, here are some links to learn more about Victoria Day legislation across the country:


British Columbia (pdf)




Quebec (they call it National Patriot’s Day)

New Brunswick

Nova Scotia


Northwest Territories


Yukon (pdf)

Well this Herd member is getting antsy just thinking about the beach. What are you doing for Victoria Day? What does Victoria Day mean to you? Comment below and I may just bring you into another blog posting!

IBEX Payroll extends our profound respect and immeasurable gratitude to all the ancestors and keepers of the land on whose traditional territories our work takes place. We acknowledge that we are on Treaty 1 territory, the traditional gathering place of the Anishinaabe, Cree, Oji-Cree, Dakota and Dene people and the traditional homeland of the Métis people. This land is sacred, historical, and significant. 

Every time we acknowledge this truth, we have an invitation and an opportunity to reflect on the wrongs of the past, what we do in the present, and what we can do to continually honour the people whose lands and water we benefit from today. 

This statement only acts as a first step in honouring the land we reside on and its peoples, and must be paired with education, understanding and informed action.