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workplace harassment

Record human rights damage award for injury to dignity, feelings and self-respect: AB v Joe Singer Shoes Limited

The Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario has awarded a record $200,000 as a human rights damage award in the case of AB v Joe Singer Shoes Limited, where the employee suffered injury to dignity, feelings and self-respect resulting from repeated sexual assault and harassment.

 

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When should an employer conduct a workplace investigation?

Under the common law, and specifically under Sections 25(2)(h) and 32.0.5 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (Ontario), every employer has a duty to conduct a workplace investigation after an incident of workplace violence has allegedly occurred. In other words, if an employer gets a complaint about violence at work, or if the employer witnesses violence at work, it must conduct an investigation.

 

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Q&A: Who may be hired as a third party investigator to deal with workplace harassment complaints?

Is there any legislation that dictates who may or may not be hired as a third party investigator?

 

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Q&A: When is an employer’s duty to investigate workplace harassment triggered?

In this conference Q&A, we address when an employer’s duty to investigate workplace harassment is triggered. In partnership with Stringer LLP, First Reference Inc. recently hosted the 19th Annual Employment Law Conference on June 12, 2018, where we discussed the latest legal developments including issues surrounding workplace harassment. We received a large number of questions […]

 

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Requirements for conducting a workplace harassment investigation: lessons from the Green Party

Any allegation of harassment in the workplace needs to be taken seriously. Not the least of which, employers should be mindful of the statutory duty to conduct a related investigation.

 

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Workplace investigation alert: BC case shows how employers should NOT handle workplace harassment

A recent case from British Columbia, Wells v. Langley Senior Resources Society, is a useful example of how an employer should not handle workplace harassment.

 

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2018 will be a pivotal year for employers and HR managers in Ontario – #LearnTheLatest

With most of the amendments of Bill 148 now in effect—along with significant updates to OHS and WCB provisions, the upcoming legalization of recreational marijuana, and more on the way—there are many substantial changes employers in Ontario have to deal with now and throughout 2018.

 

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Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario: the “Code” matters, not social norms

Although there may be social norms at play, a business owner would do well to continue to update and implement workplace and human rights policies on an ongoing basis, otherwise, they may be liable for any breach of the “Code”, whether intended or otherwise.

 

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Three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk

The three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk deal with marijuana in the workplace, proposed parental leave benefit and workplace harassment as a WSIB claim.

 

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Sexual harassment and Valentine’s Day

Employers need to be aware of the sexual tensions at play in an office, or risk being held liable for failing to address a poisoned work environment. For example, if two co-workers had a relationship and then broke up, and one is now showing revealing photos of the other around the office, this likely creates a poisoned work environment for the depicted employee. Though a manager may be tempted to deem the matter personal, the employer has an obligation to protect the employee.

 

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The Supreme Court of Canada issues landmark decision on the scope of human rights legislation

The Supreme Court of Canada recently issued a much-anticipated decision on the scope of human rights legislation, finding that the British Columbia Human Rights Code is not limitless in its scope, and instead created a new contextual test to determine whether alleged discriminatory conduct is conduct within the scope of the Code.

 

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Workers now eligible for WSIB benefits for chronic mental stress and workplace harassment

The recent changes to the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act may well be a blessing for employees without other remedy or recourse. At this time, it appears possible that employees who have been subject to chronic workplace stress may be able to apply to the WSIB for some form of benefit. What the WSIB and the WSIAT do with this new entitlement is yet to be seen.

 

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Sexual harassment house of cards

Another week, another list of public allegations of sexual abuse, sexual assault and sexual harassment against high profile men in the entertainment industry, politics and beyond. The onslaught of allegations, which began in earnest with the allegations against Harvey Weinstein, followed soon after by allegations against what appears to be almost every other man in Hollywood, created a #MeToo movement indicating that it is a rare occurrence for a woman to have not been abused or harassed, with many instances work-related.

 

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Supreme Court of Canada confirms that all workplace harassment is protected – even by third parties

In British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal v. Schrenk, 2017 SCC 62, the Supreme Court of Canada confirmed that human rights legislation is to be interpreted broadly and purposively and specifically found that the protection against workplace harassment is not limited to conduct perpetrated by an individual’s employer or co-worker. This decision will have significant implications for employers and employees alike.

 

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Workplace politics of politics in the workplace

workplace partisan political arguments

I drove past a house flying a confederate flag last week and asked myself, “Could I live beside that person?” You can’t do anything about the politics of your neighbour, although you don’t have to invite him or her to your backyard BBQ. The workplace, however is another story. How does an employer deal with an employee’s unpopular politics?

 

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