An employee who yelled and swore at a manager about a written
test for a maintenance position, and a few days later took a gun
out of a box in the company parking lot and "pumped it",
was fired for cause, an arbitrator has decided. The employee,
who already had a lengthy discipline record, also told the
human resources manager that he would "regret his
actions" and that the employee's brother" knows"
the HR manager, which the arbitrator in the employee's
dismissal grievance found was a veiled threat.
The employee said that the gun, which resembled an assault
rifle, was an "airsoft" gun, and that he simply opened
the gun box to look at it. He admitted later that it was not a good
idea to have done that.
The arbitrator said that the employee's confrontations with
the managers, taken alone, might not have justified dismissal, even
though they were very serious in light of Ontario's Bill 168
which introduced harassment and violence provisions to the
Occupational Health and Safety Act in 2010.
However, the employee's Facebook post after his dismissal
showed that he was not willing to take any responsibility for his
actions nor show a willingness to avoid outbursts in the
future. The Facebook post described the workplace as a
"s—hole" and said that he felt sorry for employees
who still had to work "in a place with so much
negativity". He also wrote that since he was "caned"
[sic] he no longer had to "concentrate on all the
bull[—-] I put up with at that place for 10 years".
In conclusion, the arbitrator decided that given the
employee's already lengthy disciplinary record and his
continuing negative feelings towards the human resources manager
and company, as shown by his Facebook post, dismissal was
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On Thursday, September 22, 2016, Dentons hosted a panel discussion about the management of liabilities and risks associated with environmental crises, including potential liabilities for directors and officers and provided insight into risk and liability techniques associated with environmental crisis management.
Unfortunately, reasonable accommodation for employees in the workplace continues to be the source of significant litigation and even today we continue to see outrageous examples of employers behaving badly.
We are now beginning to see reported cases involving charges and subsequent fines laid against employers for failing to provide information, instruction and supervision to protect a worker from workplace violence.
On October 13, 2016, the Supreme Court of Canada denied leave to appeal an Ontario Court of Appeal decision which ordered an employer to pay a former employee 37 months of salary and benefits following termination.
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