First Reference company logo

First Reference Talks

News and Discussions on Payroll, HR & Employment Law

decorative image

Author Archive - Christina Catenacci

Christina Catenacci, BA, LLB, LLM, was called to the Ontario Bar in 2002 and has since been a member of the Ontario Bar Association. Christina worked as an editor with First Reference between February 2005 and August 2015, working on publications including The Human Resources Advisor (Ontario, Western and Atlantic editions), HRinfodesk discussing topics in Labour and Employment Law. Christina has decided to pursue a PhD at the University of Western Ontario beginning in the fall of 2015. Read more

Genetic non-discrimination: Update on Bill S-201

Bill S-201 would prohibit any person from requiring an individual to undergo a genetic test as a condition of: providing goods or services to that individual; entering into or continuing a contract or agreement with that individual; or offering or continuing specific terms or conditions in a contract or agreement with that individual. Those who contravene the rules would be subject to severe penalties.

 

, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Is the recent increased support for Pride reflected in current legislation affecting employment?

July 3, 2016 marked the first time a Canadian Prime Minister marched in Toronto’s Pride parade. But some may be wondering, ‘Do Canadian laws currently protect LGBT rights in the workplace, and have they kept up with the evolving climate of increased inclusion?’ The answer depends on the particular jurisdiction involved because the issue is addressed in human rights legislation across Canada.

 

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

New edition of CSA Group’s Z1006 Management of work in confined spaces

Recently, the CSA Group has released a new version of its standard concerning work in confined spaces, entitled Z1006-16 – Management of work in confined spaces. Employers need to be aware that there have been some important changes in this edition that are worth noting. The entire 108 page document can be viewed here.

 

, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Employers upcoming responsibilities regarding sexual harassment in Ontario

On March 8, 2016, Ontario Bill 132, Sexual Violence and Harassment Action Plan Act (Supporting Survivors and Challenging Sexual Violence and Harassment), 2016, received Royal Assent. Schedule 4, which deals with changes to the Occupational Health and Safety Act regarding workplace harassment, comes into force September 8, 2016. The changes will do a few of the following things.

 

, , , , , , , , , ,

#ghomeshi verdict in: Acquittal on all sexual assault charges

On March 24, 2016, Ontario Court Justice William Horkins delivered his ruling: Ghomeshi has been acquitted of all sexual assault charges.

 

, , , , , , , , , , ,

Ontario Human Rights Commission’s policy position on gender-specific dress codes

Can you think of a store, restaurant, or bar that appears to require women to wear low-cut tops, short skirts, tight dresses, or high heels when they go to work? Well, it might be wise for those employers to take another look at their dress code policy in light of the Ontario Human Rights Commission position on gender-specific dress code announced on International Women’s Day 2016 and the passing into law of occupational health and safety provisions protecting against workplace sexual harassment and violence. Under Bill 132, the OHSA’s definition of “workplace harassment” will be expanded to include “workplace sexual harassment.”

 

, , , , , , , , ,

Jian Ghomeshi verdict expected March 24 2016

As you may know, a criminal trial, R v Ghomeshi, took place this year to address allegations of sexual assault against several victims and concluded just last week. It was announced that the verdict in the Ghomeshi criminal trial will be handed down March 24, 2016. However, the evidence submitted during the criminal trial and its outcome is very different from the workplace aspect of this case.

 

, , , , , , , , ,

Construction manager is given prison sentence of three and one half years

Construction project manager receives prison time for Toronto scaffold deaths under health and safety criminal negligence in the Criminal Code..

 

, , , , , , ,

Alberta the newest province to add gender identity and gender expression to human rights legislation

Effective December 11, 2015, Alberta has added gender identity and gender expression as a prohibited ground of discrimination under its Human Rights Act.

 

, , , , ,

Privacy Commissioner releases annual report regarding portable storage devices

On December 10, 2015, the Privacy Commissioner of Canada released an annual report to Parliament highlighting a result of an audit of the government’s management of portable storage devices and reported data breaches.

 

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Saskatchewan government’s do-over: another version of essential services legislation proposed

Bill 183, The Saskatchewan Employment (Essential Services) Amendment Act, 2015, proposes a new Part VII in the Employment Act, entitled Essential Services. The Bill is currently in third reading.

 

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Project manager guilty of health and safety criminal negligence in Metron Construction case

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice ruled that the Crown proved beyond a reasonable doubt that a project manager was criminally negligent in causing the deaths of four workers and bodily harm to one involved in a workplace accident. –

 

, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Personal information and medical leaves – careful what you disclose

I recently read an interesting case made by the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (decision 2014 – 014) stating that under subsection 5(3) of the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) that the employer’s purposes for disclosing the employee’s personal information regarding his medical leave were not appropriate in the circumstances and were not necessary for the organization to meet its employee schedule management needs in the context of its work environment.

 

, , , , , , , ,

No obligation to let employee smoke marijuana at work as a form of accommodation

The British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal, in French v Selkin Logging, found that an employer did not discriminate based on the ground of physical disability by refusing to allow the employee from smoking marijuana at work. The company’s zero-tolerance policy for drugs constituted a bona fide occupational requirement (BFOR).

 

, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Even long-term employees with a clean record can be handed a lengthy suspension when it is warranted

A recent Ontario Grievance Settlement Board case highlights the point that, even where employees are long-term and have a clean service record, they can still be subject to serious discipline if the circumstances are right.

 

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Previous Posts Next posts