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Public Safety

Off-duty transit officer entitled to workers' comp benefits for injuries sustained confronting intoxicated driver

Topics: - BC WCAT - WorkSafeBC
Jurisdiction: - British Columbia

The Vancouver Sun published a story today ("Off-duty transit officer wins precedential injury compensation") about a recent BC Workers' Compensation Appeal Tribunal decision in which a transit police officer was awarded workers compensation benefits for injuries he sustained, on a day-off, confronting an intoxicated driver.

The Sun's story was spurred by a news release issued yesterday by the transit police officers' union, the Canadian Office and Professional Employees' Union, Local 378 (COPE 378).

The WCAT decision (WCAT-2010-01816) was issued on June 30, 2010. As noted in the decision, the issue before the panel was "whether or not the worker's multiple soft tissue injuries arose out of and in the course of his employment entitling the worker to compensation under section 5(1) of the Act.".  read more »

Industrial inquiry commission delivers report on BC Ambulance Service, including appropriate collective bargaining structure

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia

The industrial inquiry commission reviewing different service delivery and operational models for the BC Ambulance Service, including options on an appropriate collective bargaining structure, delivered its report to the BC Minister of Labour on January 15, 2010, according to this January 18, 2010 news release from the government.

The report was written by Chris Trumpy, a long time public servant who was the Deputy Minister of Finance before retiring in 2009.

In addition to the appropriate collective bargaining structure, the Trumpy report examines issues relating to staff recruitment, training and retention; staff workload and occupational health and safety; deployment strategies; and total compensation for paramedics and dispatchers.

The non-binding report has been provided to CUPE Local 873, the union representing BC's paramedics and dispatchers, and their employer, the Emergency and Health Services Commission.  read more »

Leave to appeal to Supreme Court of Canada filed in case concerning Tribunal's authority to award legal costs

Jurisdiction: - Canada/Federal
Sector: - Public Safety

In Canada (Attorney General) v. Mowat  2009 FCA 309, the Federal Court of Appeal ruled that the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal does not have authority to award legal costs to successful complainants.

This overturned the Tribunal's November 2006 decision, in which it had awarded the complainant $47,000 on account of her legal costs plus interest from the date of the decision to the date of payment.

The Supreme Court of Canada's website shows that the Canadian Human Rights Commission has now filed an application for leave to appeal the case to the Supreme Court of Canada.

US Supreme Court to decide if privacy rights covered worker's personal text message on employer's equipment

Jurisdiction: - United States
Sector: - Public Safety

You can read about the case in the NY Times article ("Supreme Court Takes Texting Case", Dec. 14, 2009) found here.

Industrial Inquiry Commission appointed to review bargaining structure for ambulance paramedics and dispatchers

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia

The BC Government announced today that it will be appointing an Industrial Inquiry Commission under the BC Labour Relations Code to reveiw the bargaining structure for ambulance paramedics and dispatchers. You can read the news release here.

Yesteday, the provincial government introduced legislation - the Ambulance Services Collective Agreement Act (Bill 21) - that would impose a new collective agreement on the paramedics and dispatchers and end the seven month labour dispute (which has been subject to an essential services order). You can read more about the labour dispute and legislation in this Vancouver Sun story

Change in circumstances was transfer of business, not termination; no severance owing under Canada Labour Code

Jurisdiction: - Canada/Federal

Group 4 Falck (Canada) Ltd. and Abdulla (Re) (October 13, 2009, Canada, T. Hodges)