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News and Discussions on Payroll, HR & Employment Law

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Improving web accessibility – our own!

Customers demand more of businesses in so many ways these days—better quality and safety, greater social and environmental responsibility, extra service, and accessibility. The law increases its demands frequently, too. Even our governments and public service providers have a hard time keeping up with the legal requirements! Making improvements in all of these areas can challenge an organization, but only accessibility offers the advantage of access to a market of unrealized potential.


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Employee was tricked into training his replacement before being terminated

In a recent post, I discussed an example of the employer doing the right thing. Unfortunately, today’s story is an example of the employer doing the wrong thing.


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Failure to use employment agreements properly

A topic that I address often in presentations and with clients is the failure, on the part of the vast majority of employers in Canada, to use employment agreements properly (if at all). As I have said many times, policies and agreements are the easiest ways for employers to establish the rights and obligations of the parties and avoid having them imposed by common law or other principles.


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Introducing guest blogger Suzanne Cohen Share

It’s a pleasure to welcome Suzanne Cohen Share as a regular guest blogger. She will be blogging on several legal matters of concern to small to medium-sized businesses, specifically on the topic of accessibility standards and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act.


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Judge orders federal government to make websites accessible to the blind

In Donna Jodhan v. Attorney General of Canada, a recent significant accessibility ruling, a Federal Court judge has ordered Ottawa to make all of the government websites accessible to the blind within 15 months.


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Employer obligations and the holiday party

The holidays are right around the corner and this often translates into lots of company-sponsored events, parties and commitments. While these events bring joy and merriment to employees, they can also bring legal troubles for employers related to alcohol, harassment, violence and discrimination.


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Nova Scotia unified labour board

I recently read about a Bill coming out of Nova Scotia that proposes to merge a number of official forums involving employment and labour relations into one Labour Board, to simplify how workplace disputes are handled, and to establish a committee to keep labour relations laws relevant.


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Accessible electronic information and communications: small steps with a big outcome

There are some simple ways all of us can alter our daily habits so that people with a variety of disabilities who depend on a screen reader can understand your information. What is a screen reader? A screen reader reads aloud electronic communications.


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How would you manage Gordon Ramsay if he was your employee?

How would you manage Gordon Ramsay if he was your employee? How many of you are thinking, “With the revenue he generates, he can act any way he wants”?


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An interesting story of how the employer did the right thing

I recently read a case coming out of the Yukon where an employee accused his employer of discriminating against him based on the ground of mental disability, which was contrary to the Yukon Human Rights Act.


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Citizenship and Immigration Canada announces new federal immigrant investor program

On November 10, 2010, Citizenship and Immigration Canada published regulations in the Canada Gazette, which reinstate the Canadian Federal Immigrant Investor Program (“IIP”). However, the new IIP now requires an investment of $800,000CAD and a personal net worth of $1.6 Million CAD. The regulations come into force on December 1, 2010.


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Increase in litigation by employers against former employees

In reviewing the cases that come along through the various reporting services, my subjective impression is that there appears to be an increase in litigation by employers against former employees.


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Dealing with an employee’s extended absence due to illness

Employers are often faced with the prospect of dealing with an employee who is required to be absent from work for an extended period of time due to an illness. Employers must tread a fine line in determining when the employee is able to return to work and on what basis.


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Slaw: Employees fired for Facebook comments

The British Columbia Labour Relations Board recently upheld the firing of two employees by a car dealership over comments they posted on Facebook about their employer. The lawyer for the employer stated that he believes this is the first Facebook firing case to be heard in Canada.


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Should ergonomic training be mandatory in every workplace?

I recently read a case coming out of Alberta where a clerical worker developed carpel tunnel syndrome from work. She was promoted in her workplace and had to do even more typing and handwriting with poor quality office furniture and pens. She was not able to take breaks due to the pressure to produce, staff shortages and hiring freezes. Ultimately, the new job aggravated her condition to the point where she required surgery.


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