Tag: employee misconduct

What HR can do to prevent workplace violence

by Jonathan R. Mook News reports of yet another workplace shooting have become all too frequent in our media-saturated world. The seemingly constant reports of shootings makes clear to all employers the inconvenient truth that no workplace is totally immune from the possibility that a violent incident will occur. Indeed, according to the federal Occupational […]

mistake

When a good employee makes a bad mistake

by Mark I. Schickman Brian Williams was NBC’s news superstar, appearing on programs ranging from 30 Rock, Saturday Night Live, and The Tonight Show. He was a beloved regular on the talk show circuit. Since 2004, he was heir to a line of NBC news chiefs flowing from Chet Huntley and David Brinkley through John […]

Further clarification on ‘unjust’ dismissals

By Louise Béchamp As we reported previously, employers in Canada’s federal sector have had the right to dismiss employees without cause with one caveat. Only if the dismissal was not “unjust” within the meaning of section 240 of the Canada Labour Code. In Wilson v. Atomic Energy of Canada, the Federal Court of Appeal determined […]

Zero tolerance for stalking on company time

by Chuck Harrison A single incident of misconduct can still justify the termination of a unionized employee’s employment. So ruled a labor arbitrator in British Columbia recently. In Fortis Energy Inc., (February 16, 2015) the employee had engaged in an incident of stalking and intimidation of his wife’s supervisor. Compounding his offense, he did this […]

Occupational health and safety due diligence defense alive and well

by Rosalind H. Cooper A recent case involving charges against a company under the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act has confirmed that the defense of due diligence is alive and well. The defense of due diligence—which may allow employers to avoid a conviction under occupational health and safety legislation—can be difficult to establish. Even […]

Deflategate and the power of external investigations

After more than three months of waiting, we finally got the investigative report regarding the New England Patriots’ “Deflategate” incident that occurred during the NFL’s AFC Championship Game earlier this year. Was it worth the wait? Was the NFL’s subsequent punishment just? It’s pretty clear it depends on whom you ask. Authored by Ted Wells […]

To fire or not to fire: Remember arrested employee may not be guilty

Learning that a trusted employee has been arrested and accused of theft is always alarming, but the question of what to do—suspend, terminate, or wait and see how the case plays out—adds even more stress. Recently, several attorneys who represent employers were asked what to do in such a situation. Their advice: Suspension or termination […]

The case for cause with a single act of employee misconduct

by Keri Bennett The Supreme Court of Canada tells Canadian employers that they must strike a balance between the severity of the misconduct and the sanction imposed when deciding whether to terminate employment for cause. So what happens when the misconduct is a single act? Can that justify termination for cause? According to the British […]

Fire Harry Crane

Mad Men can be tough to watch for an employment lawyer. I was thinking of this while watching the show’s most recent episode, “New Business.” In a particularly cringe-worthy scene, Harry Crane propositions Megan under the pretense that he can help get her acting career back on track. Harry is a buffoon and a jackass, and I wondered […]

Refusing to collaborate in harassment investigation can be grounds for dismissal

By Olivier Lamoureux In Séguin v. Dessau Inc., a tribunal, the Commission des relations du travail (CRT), upheld the dismissal of an employee who had behaved in a vexatious manner toward a subordinate he was enamored with. The dismissed employee had refused to collaborate in the employer’s investigation into an incident of psychological harassment.