We are finally starting to see how the first labour and employment cases have grappled with COVID-19 in the workplace. One such decision is Garda Security Screening Inc. v. IAM, District 140 (Shoker Grievance) ( O.L.A.A. No. 162), an arbitral award centred on staff working at an airport. The Shoker Grievance stems from a bulletin entitled "Know the Difference: Self -- Monitoring, Self -- Isolation, and Isolation for Covid -- 19 guidelines" (the “Health Bulletin”) which was distributed by Garda to its workers in late March 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic presents as a risk towards both the physical and mental health of your employees. Self-isolation can have a drastic impact on the mental wellbeing on your employees.
On March 25, 2020, Health Minister Patty Hajdu announced an Emergency Order under the Quarantine Act, which would legally require any person (with the exception of “essential workers”), who arrived in Canada (by air, sea, or land), to place themselves into self-isolation (i.e., self-quarantine) for a period of 14 days, in order to prevent further spread of the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19). The Public Health Agency of Canada also issued a press release relating to the Emergency Order on the same day. Further details regarding the Emergency Order appear below.