Resources: Health + Safety

  • Be Careful What You Say: Discharge for Bad Faith Accusations Against Supervisor Upheld

    October 12, 2021

    by Ryan Copeland

    In Teck Coal Ltd. v. United Steel, Paper and Forestry, Rubber, Manufacturing  Energy, Allied Industrial and Service Workers International Union, Local  7884 (Lybacki Grievance), [2021] B.C.C.A.A.A. No. 114 (Glass), Arbitrator Nicholas Glass dismissed a union grievance concerning the discharge of two employees, Lybacki and Sandberg, from their maintenance positions at Teck Coal’s Fording River mine.

    The two were terminated from employment after falsely accusing their supervisor, Hennessey, of being under the influence of alcohol while at work.

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  • “Proud” Employee Awarded Half a Year of Notice and Aggravated Damages After Just Two Months of Work

    October 6, 2021

    by Christopher Munroe

    Shahram Younesi knew something was not right when he walked into a meeting and his managers were standing up.  They proceeded to terminate his employment after just two months of work.  When he asked why, he was told that he was not a competent engineer or a good manager, and that he embarrassed the company.  He was offered one month of pay in lieu of notice and asked to immediately sign a letter to confirm his acceptance of those terms.  He refused and ultimately sued.

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  • Tribunal Decision Underscores Flexible, Common Sense Approach to Accommodation

    September 10, 2021

    by Kate DueckMike Hamata

    Consider this scenario: an employee suffers an injury at work, takes a medical leave, undergoes surgery and asks to return to work with significant restrictions on their ability to perform the basic tasks associated with the role. Most employers can relate to this scenario all too well and are familiar with the delicate balance that exists between the employer’s duty to accommodate and the point of undue hardship.

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  • Employer Obligations on Election Day

    August 30, 2021

    by James D. Kondopulos

    A federal general election will be held on Monday, September 20, 2021.

    As a service to our clients, we are publishing this bulletin on the obligations owed by employers to their employees on election day.


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  • Vaccination Status and the “New Normal”

    August 13, 2021

    by Drew DemerseChristopher Munroe

    As governments and businesses seek to avoid closures that have so heavily impacted the economy and everyday life, many are looking to vaccine passports and/or considering mandatory vaccination in the workplace to facilitate a return to “normal” operations.

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  • The BC Human Rights Commissioner Weighs in on Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccination Policies

    August 6, 2021

    by S. BlancoChristopher Munroe

    As vaccination rates increase, and the province continues to progress through each phase of its reopening plan, one of the biggest questions facing employers is whether to implement a mandatory vaccination policy for employees and, in some cases, customers. This is a complex and highly context-specific question that engages human rights issues, privacy issues, and workplace safety considerations.

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  • COVID-19-Related Misconduct is Nothing to Sneeze At

    July 29, 2021

    by Rebecca Klass

    In a decision issued on May 10, 2021[1], Arbitrator Paul Love dismissed a discipline grievance related to COVID-19-related misconduct.  The discipline was issued at a time when, in the words of the arbitrator, “there was a dearth of arbitral jurisprudence” with respect to such misconduct.

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  • Sick Leave Abuse: Unacceptable Even When Working From Home

    July 19, 2021

    by Kate Dueck

    Over the past year or so, most organizations have moved at least some of their workers to a work-from-home arrangement.  In doing so, employers have placed trust in their workers to complete their tasks and be working as and when required.

    In a recent decision  Arbitrator Arne Peltz considered whether a worker who worked from home could be discharged for sick leave abuse.

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  • BC Arbitrator Orders “Make Whole” Remedy After Union Invokes Doctrine of Double Jeopardy

    July 13, 2021

    In School District No. 73 v. BCTF (Wasylik Grievance), a recent British Columbia labour arbitration case, Arbitrator Ken Saunders issued a supplementary award respecting remedy after finding that the union had properly invoked the labour relations doctrine of double jeopardy to bar the grievor’s just cause dismissal.

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  • Demotion As Discipline

    July 7, 2021

    by Mike Hamata

    In the recent decision of Coquitlam Public Library v. Canadian Union of Public Employees, Local 561 (L. Levesque Grievance) [2021], arbitrator Christopher Sullivan reinstated the grievor, substituting a permanent demotion in place of termination.

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