An Ontario court has dismissed a charge against an employer of
failing to acquaint a worker with a hazard, because the
worker's supervisor knew of the hazard.
The charge was laid against Transgear Manufacturing under
section 25(2)(d) of the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act,
which requires employers to "acquaint a worker or a person in
authority over a worker with a hazard . . ."
Justice of the Peace Ziegler, of the Ontario Court of Justice in
Guelph, found that the injured worker's supervisor, the
Maintenance Supervisor, was "in authority" over the
injured worker and "not only does [the Maintenance Supervisor]
have his ability to repair, maintain, lockout and partially lockout
machines under his purview but he is also acquainted with any
hazard in the work . . ."
The court noted that "There is no offence under the
Occupational Health and Safety Act which limits acquainting the
named hazards to the worker only, it requires that the acquainting
of the named hazards be either the worker 'or a person in
authority over the worker'. Therefore I must read in the words
'or a person in authority over the worker' after the words
'acquaint a worker' in Count 3."
Interestingly, the court went on to convict Transgear of failing
to provide sufficient "information, instruction and
supervision" to the worker under section 25(2)(a) of the
Occupational Health and Safety Act, apparently because that section
dealt only with the awareness of the worker himself, not also of
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Back in July 2012, we covered "PVYW v Comcare" (No 2),  FCA 395, which concerned an employee in the HR department of an Australian government agency who was injured on a work-related trip to a country town in New South Wales.
The employee, Ashworth, alleged that the manager demanded that she close the door and then positioned herself in front of the closed door and started screaming and pointing her finger in the employee’s face.
A discussion on the judicial decision in a recent case, where a BC employer has successfully defended a claim for constructive dismissal despite taking away supervisory duties and moving the employee from an office to a cubicle.