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Privacy

"Swipe card" records inadmissible to prove time theft

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia
Sector: - Manufacturing;

In the recent arbitration decision Zellstoff Celgar Ltd. v. Public and Private Workers of Canada, Local 1, [2017] B.C.C.A.A.A. No. 53, an arbitrator excluded evidence obtained in breach of PIPA but allowed the employee's admission against interest procured after being presented with the excluded evidence. 

The employer terminated the grievor for time theft after learning his time cards did not align with the 'swipe card' records showing when the grievor entered and exited the building. The arbitrator accepted the union's argument that employees were not notified the swipe card records would be collected and used by the employer, and therefore the data was collected contrary to PIPA and should not be admitted. 

However, the arbitrator accepted the grievor's admission of time card discrepancies was admissible, despite the confession having been procured after being confronted with the swipe card records.   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 »

Non-Profit in compliance with PIPA when it collected written account of employee’s criminal activity

Jurisdiction: - Alberta
Sector: - Non-Profit

In Redi Enterprises Society, Oorder P2016 -07 (November 30, 2016), the Alberta Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner ruled that a non-profit organization, Redi Enterprises Society, did not breach the Alberta Personal Information Protection Act when it asked its employee to provide a written account of her past criminal conviction.

Specifically, the Commissioner ruled:  read more »

Alberta Information and Privacy Commissioner comments on proposed amendments to Alberta PIPA

Jurisdiction: - Alberta

The Alberta Information and Privacy Commissioner's office issued the news release below today (November 20, 2014) in relation to proposed amendments to the Alberta Personal Information Protection Act.

The proposed amendments have been tabled by the Alberta government in response to a decision issued by the Supreme Court of Canada in December 2013. See my post here: "SCC rules that AB PIPA violates freedom of expression in the labour relations context; PIPA struck down".

The proposed amendments also follow a letter that the Alberta Commissioner, Jill Clayton, wrote in December 2013, following the Supreme Court of Canada's decision. See my post here:"Alberta Privacy Commissioner pens letter regarding how to make Alberta PIPA constitutionally compliant"

NEWS RELEASE

November 20, 2014  read more »

Alberta Privacy Commissioner pens letter regarding how to make Alberta PIPA constitutionally compliant

Jurisdiction: - Alberta

In Alberta (Information and Privacy Commissioner) v. United Food and Commercial Workers, Local 401, 2013 SCC 62, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that the Alberta Personal Information Protection Act ("PIPA") violated section 2(b) of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and could not be saved under section 1 of the Charter. See my full entry on this cae here: "SCC rules that AB PIPA violates freedom of expression in the labour relations context; PIPA struck down".

In a letter that was published on January 14, 2014, the Alberta Information and Privacy Commissioner has now advised the Alberta government on what changes she thinks should be made to the Alberta PIPA to allow it to be constitutionally compliant. The letter, dated December 20, 2013, can be found here.

"Top 10 Employment And Labour Law Cases In 2013" according to Cassels Brock & Blackwell

The law firm of Cassels Brock & Blackwell has issued their, "Top 10 Employment And Labour Law Cases In 2013". 

The cases on their list are set below. Note: the summaries with the cases are mostly my word-for-word cut and paste's from the original article:

1. Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada, Local 30 v. Irving Pulp & Paper, Ltd., 2013 SCC 34

The Supreme Court of Canada ruled that random alcohol testing in the workplace is prohibited unless the employer can prove that, in addition to having a dangerous workplace, there are other pressing factors such as an overt substance abuse problem in the workplace.

2. Pate Estate v. Harvey (Township), 2013 ONCA 669

The Ontario Court of Appeal agreed that the Township employer had severely mistreated the dismissed employee, but reduced the punitive damages award from $550,000 to $450,000.  read more »

SCC rules that AB PIPA violates freedom of expression in the labour relations context; PIPA struck down

Jurisdiction: - Alberta

In Alberta (Information and Privacy Commissioner) v. United Food and Commercial Workers, Local 401, 2013 SCC 62, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that the Alberta Personal Information Protection Act ("PIPA") violated section 2(b) of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and could not be saved under section 1 of the Charter.

Specifically, the Court stated:

37. PIPA imposes restrictions on a union's ability to communicate and persuade the public of its cause, impairing its ability to use one of its most effective bargaining strategies in the course of a lawful strike.  In our view, this infringement of the right to freedom of expression is disproportionate to the government's objective of providing individuals with control over personal information that they expose by crossing a picketline.  read more »