Category: Raising the Bar

Revisiting the 2016 Changes to the BC Human Rights Code

HRMA Conference + Tradeshow 2017 speaker Nicole Byres provides commentary on the recent amendments to the BC Human Rights Code to include “gender identity or expression” among the protected grounds covered by the Code.

Just How Private is an Employee’s Text Messaging?

Information and evidence obtained from social media or electronic communications is playing an increasingly important role in the workplace, but employers must be conscious of employee privacy rights. As a result, the Ontario Court of Appeal’s recent decision regarding whether there is a reasonable expectation of privacy in sent text messages is of particular interest to employers.

Arbitration Board: Regular Medical Marijuana User Wrongfully Held Out Of Safety-Sensitive Position

Most people would be concerned if a person operating heavy road maintenance equipment in a large city was also a regular medical marijuana consumer, entitled by permit to consume a significant amount of marijuana on a daily basis. In responding to this concern, a large municipal employer removed a long service employee from the workplace, citing concerns over public safety. The employee challenged the removal, alleging discrimination on the basis of disability.

26 Months’ Notice for (In)Dependent Contractors

A decision from Ontario highlights the caution that companies need to employ when characterizing those who provide services to them as “contractors.”

Case Review: Workers’ Compensation and Partial Loss of Earnings

In Puar v Workers’ Compensation Appeal Tribunal, the Supreme Court of British Columbia confirmed that the original decision denying full loss of earnings and workers’ compensation benefits to an injured employee was not patently unreasonable. The evidence showed that the employee was able to work and was appropriately awarded partial loss of earning benefits, however, since the original decision was not patently unreasonable, part of the application was denied.

God, Homosexuality and the Legalities of Refusing Service

For a country founded on principles of freedom, liberty and equality, the United States is having tremendous difficulty grappling with same-sex marriage and LGBTQ discrimination. The topic has been getting attention in Canada as well. With so much focus on such a sensitive topic, it begs the question, with respect to service, does religion trump equality?

Determining Wrongful Dismissal Damages in Fast-Track Litigation

Rules of court in most jurisdictions in Canada make provision for summary trials or fast-track litigation, trial processes that are particularly well-suited to wrongful dismissal litigation where only the amount of reasonable notice is in dispute. A question arises in these expedited processes as to how damages should be assessed if the case comes before the court during the reasonable notice period.

Hydro One Had Every Right to Fire Sexist Soccer Fan

Can a company fire an employee for an occurrence completely removed from the workplace? The simple reality is that yes it can.

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