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workplace investigations

How an external investigation actually saved money for an employer

A recent Human Rights Tribunal decision demonstrates that the short-term financial costs of an external investigation might also be balanced out by long-term financial savings.

 

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8 tips on keeping an investigation confidential

Investigations contain sensitive material that must always be kept confidential, a standard which has been adopted in the Ministry of Labour’s Code of Practice.

 

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5 Key Changes to Newfoundland & Labrador’s OHS Workplace Violence & Harassment Prevention obligations effective January 1, 2020

Violence and harassment is an unfortunate reality of society – and of the workplace. Since April 1, 2019 (when New Brunswick’s new workplace anti-violence and harassment regulations took effect) every Canadian province and territory has an occupational health and safety regulatory scheme dealing specifically with workplace violence.

 

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Believing women while remaining neutral: Conducting sexual harassment and sexual violence investigations in a post-#metoo world

As in all investigations, the only way to sort out information that does not seem to make sense is to ask. In the case of complainants who may have experienced a traumatic event, asking such questions in a calm, non-judgmental way is more important than ever.

 

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Workplace investigation alert – Injunctions in investigations: Do they ever work?

There is no question that workplace investigations are disruptive and difficult for the parties involved. Sometimes parties are removed from the workplace or their duties are modified. Complainants and respondents are often concerned about damage to their reputations and their careers once it is known that a complaint has been made, and that an investigation is being conducted. Can an investigation ever be shut down in anticipation of this disruption?

 

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Workplace investigations that are required or recommended

Until the last few years formal workplace investigations were relatively uncommon. Recent changes to the law however have totally changed the legal landscape relating to workplace investigations. To reduce legal exposure and save costs, I believe most employers should ensure that at least one employee receives workplace investigation training. This blog discusses four scenarios where workplace investigations are required or recommended.

 

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Three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk

Three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk deal with: An FAQ in relation to an employer’s obligation to have a casual worker sign off on vacation pay; a case that looks at workplace investigations; and Ontario’s proposal of eliminating the “30% Rule” for pension investment.

 

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Sexual harassment becoming a health & safety issue in Ontario

On October 27, 2015, the Ontario government tabled Bill 132, Sexual Violence and Harassment Action Plan Act which, among other things, amends the Occupational Health and Safety Act to make workplace sexual harassment a health and safety issue.

 

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Duty to conduct workplace investigations increasing

In recent years, there has been a dramatic increase in the role of investigations within HR and employment law. It is well-established that employers have a duty to investigate allegations of misconduct prior to taking disciplinary action. There is also a duty to investigate allegations of harassment or discrimination. There has been much emphasis on the manner of investigating such matters, and the need to be fair and impartial while also acting expeditiously. In the HR Law for HR Professionals course that I created for Osgoode Professional Development several years ago, investigations used to be a small part of one module. They now fill an entire day of the five day course. That is a clear indication of their growing importance.

 

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The importance of workplace investigations

As I head to Osgoode Professional Development for module 3 of the course that my partner and I are Directors of, HR Law for HR Professionals, I am contemplating one of the aspects of HR law that has changed significantly in recent years: investigations.

 

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OLRB opens the door to harassment reprisal complaints under the OHSA

The Ontario Labour Relations Board (“OLRB”) recently made an important decision which may represent a significant shift in how it approaches allegations that employers have engaged in reprisals against workers who have filed harassment complaints.

 

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Five steps to effective internal investigations

How often do you undertake an internal investigation? In an environment where employers are under increasingly strict obligations to investigate workplace incidents over an increasing number of issues, employers in Ontario are facing more complaints…

 

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The debate over moral damages continues

Since Honda v. Keays, employment law and human resources practitioners have been watching how the law regarding bad faith dismissals has developed, in particular, the assessment of moral damages. A recently published decision has added some clarity to the moral damages question. The case, Canada (Attorney General) v. Tipple (2011) dealt with the well known case of Douglas Tipple.

 

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Employment standards update – Learn the latest

Historically, Ontario’s employment standards laws have been reviewed and updated frequently to address changes in the workplace. As expected, the provincial government has adopted various changes to employment standards in the last year or so. Understanding and following the Employment Standards Act requires that those affected by changes make the time to read about them and ask questions if something is unclear. In addition, it is your responsibility…

 

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OHS compliance orders issued against metal company where employee crushed his arm

I recently read an article about how the Nova Scotia Department of Labour issued seven compliance orders against a metal works company in the province after a 24-year-old worker was seriously hurt.

 

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