Resources: Health + Safety

  • 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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  • 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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  • Accessible British Columbia Act

    June 29, 2021

    by James D. Kondopulos

    The Accessible British Columbia Act (the “Act”) received royal assent on June 17, 2021.

    The new legislation requires government and prescribed organizations to establish an accessibility committee for the purpose of identifying, removing and preventing barriers which hinder the full and equal participation in society of persons with disabilities.

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  • Record-Setting Damages Awarded by B.C. Human Rights Tribunal Following Racial Discrimination

    May 19, 2021

    On January 28, 2021, the former Chair of the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal, Diana Juricevic, issued her decision respecting remedy after finding that the Government of British Columbia discriminated and retaliated against a corrections officer contrary to the B.C. Human Rights Code (the “Remedy Decision”).

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  • Managing Mental Health in the Workplace

    May 17, 2021

    Employers often face unique challenges when dealing with employees who suffer from mental health issues. This article highlights the essential points of an employer’s duty to accommodate employees with mental disabilities in the workplace.

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  • Hot Mic Catches Ref Offside

    April 19, 2021

    by Mike Hamata

    In March, referee Tim Peel was captured on a hot mic boasting about calling a penalty because he “wanted to.” In less than 24 hours, Peel’s employment with the National Hockey League (NHL) had been terminated. In its statement, the NHL said “Nothing is more important than ensuring the integrity of our game.”

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  • Discharge Upheld for Employee Who Violated Employer’s COVID-19 Policies

    March 2, 2021

    by Maggie Campbell

    In Labourers’ International Union of North America, Loc. 183 v. AECON Industrial, 2020 CanLII 91950 (ON LA) (Carrier), the discharge of an employee who attended work after exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms and contrary to his employer’s direction was upheld.  This decision offers a firm rebuke against conduct which potentially puts other employees at risk of contracting the virus, and provides employers with strong support for issuing significant discipline in response to that kind of misconduct.

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