COVID-19 and the Workplace

Whether you are an employer or an employee, this unprecedented set of circumstances has raised a lot of difficult questions. If you are unsure of your rights and obligations, we are here to help.

Please keep checking this blog and follow our social media feeds to keep up to date.

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employer obligations election day

Employer Obligations on Election Day: You Don’t Get to Decide

As we approach the federal elections, it is important that employers understand their obligations and employees understand their rights when it comes to voting.
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canada labour code changes 2019

Changes to the Canada Labour Code – Effective September 1st 2019

On September 1, 2019, several changes to the Canada Labour Code came into force. These changes impact a number of labour standards including breaks and rest periods, vacation and vacation pay and leaves of absence.
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Termination Clauses

Termination clauses have had an ongoing saga in our courts with people challenging them and trying to avoid the implications of what they signed, which can have tremendous implications.
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“Not in Your Job Description” – Fired for Masturbating at Work

In the recent case of Unifor, Local 2215 and I.M.P. Group Ltd. (AB), Re, a Nova Scotia Arbitrator upheld the termination of an employee for cause and confirmed that progressive discipline is not “an invariable rule that must be followed in all cases regardless of the circumstances.”
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potential discrimination

When does hiring the “right person” for the job lead to potential discrimination?

When companies overlook an over-qualified visible minority for one that’s the “right fit", it can lead to potential discrimination.
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body art dress codes

Body Art and Dress Codes: How Much Say Does an Employer Have?

Are employers allowed to ask employees to cover up visible tattoos while on the job? Generally speaking, employers are entitled to set the rules of the workplace. However, there must always be a balance between personal rights and legitimate business interests.
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contracts length of service

Employee’s Length of Service Not Interrupted by Creative Use of “New” Corporate Structures

The Ontario Court of Appeal recently released a decision confirming that courts will not be fooled by different corporate structures when an employee has, in reality, been employed with the same employer for years.
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mitigate damages

Employee Refuses to Return to Work After Illegal Layoff – Court Finds Failure to Mitigate

Losing a job is nerve-wrecking for most people. Employees must be careful, however, because they have a duty to mitigate their damages by taking reasonable steps to find comparable employment. Otherwise, their entitlement to damages for wrongful dismissal may be substantially reduced.
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mediation joint sessions

Better Together? The Pros and Cons of Mediation Joint Sessions

In many cases, having parties greet each other and spend a brief period of time in the same room helps to personalize the matter. That said, I always invite counsel to let me know if, due to the nature of the case or other circumstances, this would be counterproductive.
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cannabis safety

Can’t measure impairment, can’t manage safety risks, won’t hire medical cannabis user.

Employers are required to accommodate individuals to the point of “undue hardship”, where the need for accommodation relates to a ground protected by human rights legislation.
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aggravated damages

Crocodile Tears Are Not Enough: Court of Appeal Confirms High Bar for Awarding Aggravated Damages

While being terminated from one’s employment can undoubtedly lead to emotional upset, the law does not recognize mental states that fall short of injury.
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privacy breach

The Who, What, When, Where & Why of PIPEDA’s Mandatory Security Breach Reporting

Employers would be well-advised to ensure they have written policies and procedures in place to adequately handle privacy breaches.
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