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Competition Law Issues for HR Professionals in Canada

Jurisdiction: - All - United States
Sector: - All

I came across an interesting article today by Mark C. Katz entitled, "Competition Law Issues for HR Professionals in Canada".

Mark is a lawyer at Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP in Toronto. The article was published in December 2016.

You can access the full article at the link below but this is the introduction:  read more »

CRA fired 8 employees in last fiscal year for improperly accessing taxpayer information

Topics: - Privacy
Jurisdiction: - Canada/Federal

The Canada Revenue Agency terminated the employment of eight employees between April 2016 and March 2017 for accessing taxpayers' personal information without authorization.

This according to an article that ran today by the Canadian Press and that was carried by several media outlets, including the Globe and Mail and the Financial Post, and an article by the CBC. 

Other information of note from the articles (in some cases directly taken from the articles) is:  read more »

Aggravated damages awarded in absence of medical evidence

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia
Sector: - Retail Trade

In Cottrill v. Utopia Day Spas and Salons Ltd., 2017 BCSC 704, aggravated damages of $15,000 were awarded against a defendant for failing to be fair in its assessment of the plaintiff’s performance in the lead up to its decision to terminate her for cause.

This continues a recent trend in wrongful dismissal cases of aggravated damages being awarded for treatment seen by the court as unfair in the absence of medical evidence (see also Johnson v. Marine Roofing Repair & Maintenance Service (2003) Ltd., 2015 BCSC 472 for a similar result). 

G20 ministers meet on building more inclusive and diverse workforces

This is the federal government (Employment and Social Development Canada) May 10, 2017 News Release:

BAD NEUENAHR, GERMANYWhen more women and newcomers can be part of Canada's educated, skilled workforce, our middle class and our economy grow stronger.

Today, the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, discussed these key Canadian priorities at the G20 Labour and Employment Ministers Meeting, Towards an Inclusive Future - Shaping the World of Work, in Bad Neuenahr, Germany.  read more »

Quebec Ombudsman now has power to investigate public sector whistleblower complaints

Topics: - Whistle Blowing
Jurisdiction: - Quebec

Since May 1, the Québec Ombudsman has had the power to investigate disclosures about wrongdoings committed or about to be committed relating to public bodies.

The source legislation is the Act to facilitate the disclosure of wrongdoings relating to public bodies, which was passed by the Québec government in December 2016.

The law firm of Miller Thompson provides the following context for the legislation: "Following the publication of the report of the Charbonneau Commission which dealt with corruption and collusion in the awarding of public sector contracts in the construction industry, the Liberal government introduced legislation to facilitate the disclosure of wrongful conduct within the public sector and establish measures to protect whistleblowers from reprisals..." (see: "Quebec Introduces Legislation to Encourage Whistleblowing in the Public Sector" (Janaury 16, 2016).

These are some of the FAQs of note from the Ombudsman website:

Q. What is a wrongdoing  read more »

Ontario auto body repair company fined $10,000 for failing to pay ~$6,500 in ESA termination pay

Jurisdiction: - Ontario

This is the Ontario Ministry of Labour' May 16, 2017 Court Bulletin:

TORONTO, ON - Failure to comply with an order to pay amounting to $6,492.39 has resulted in a fine of $10,000 for a Scarborough business.

The company, 1685831 Ontario Inc. operating as Golden Mile Auto Collision, operates an auto repair and paint shop at 31 Comstock Road in Scarborough. It failed to comply with an order to pay issued in November 2015 by a Ministry of Labour employment standards officer that required the company to pay termination pay to an employee. 

Under the Employment Standards Act (ESA), an employment standards officer who finds that an employer owes wages to an employee may order that employer to pay the amount owed. A person who contravenes the ESA or its regulations, or fails to comply with an order under the act, is guilty of an offence.  read more »

Workers at medical marijuana clinic in Toronto join union, believed to be first for such workers in Canada

Jurisdiction: - All
Sector: - Health Care

The workers at a medical marijuana clinic in Toronto, the Canna Clinic on Broadview Avenue, have voted to join Unifor, making them the first medical marijuana workers in Canada to unionize, according to an announcement today by the union.

Unifor states that 40 employees at the clinic are now members of the union and that they will now begin to negotiate a first collective agreement at the clinic. The staff includes reception, production and packaging and retail staff, as well as supervisors.

Canna has four other clinics in Toronto, as well as clinics in Vancouver. The Canadian Association of Medical Cannabis Dispensaries estimated in 2016 that there were at least 350 medical marijuana dispensaries in Canada (see National Post Article, "Avalanche' of pot dispensaries popping up across Canada is leaving some cities without an answer", April 24, 2016).

Jerry Dias, the Unifor National President, commented, "This is a fast-growing industry, and with the advent of legalization, it is important that the workers have a voice and representation as the sector evolves over the coming years".  read more »

British Columbia government bans mandatory high heels in the workplace

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia

The British Columbia government announced today that it is following through on its commitment to ban mandatory high heels in the workplace.

This moves follows the introduction of a bill to the same effect by British Columbia Green Party Leader and MLA Andrew Weaver on March 7, 2017,  International Women's Day.

The full text of the news release is as follows:

B.C. bans mandatory high heels in the workplace

The B.C. government has followed through on its commitment to ban mandatory high heels in the workplace, announced Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour, Shirley Bond.

The requirement to wear high heels in some workplaces is a workplace health and safety issue. There is a risk of physical injury from slipping or falling, as well as possible damage to the feet, legs and back from prolonged wearing of high heels while at work.

The change was made by amending the existing footwear regulation (section 8.22) of the Occupational Health and Safety Regulation, under the Workers Compensation Act.  read more »

B.C. business leaders join forces on inclusive employment

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia
Sector: - All

The BC Government announced today that 11 new members were being added to the Presidents Group, a network of business leaders first appointed in 2013 to help increase employment opportunities for people with disabilities and create a more accessible consumer marketplace.  

Tamara Vrooman, president and CEO, Vancity (pictured) and Craig Richmond, president and CEO, Vancouver Airport Authority, are the co-chairs of the Presidents Group.

The BC government states that "The Presidents Group is part of the Accessibility 2024 leadership team. This team works with government and the disability community to implement Accessibility 2024, BC's 10-year action plan to become the most progressive province in Canada for people with disabilities."

The 11 new members are:  read more »