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Serious insight for serious situations.

Serious insight for serious situations.

Staying the course in workplace Investigations When #MeToo Becomes #MeThree and #MeFour

As we settle into 2018, it is safe to say that the number of people coming forward with harassment and discrimination complaints is on the rise.   Whether this increase is as a result of the #MeToo movement, of increased awareness as to what constitutes appropriate and inappropriate behaviour, of recently legislated workplace investigation procedures, or

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Law Society of British Columbia disciplines lawyer who admits sexual harassment

Months before the #MeToo movement exposed the world’s entertainment and media elite, the Law Society of British Columbia issued a discipline decision that was a first in British Columbia and is one of only a few similar decisions in Canada.  The January 2017 decision, involving a Victoria based lawyer, confirms that sexual harassment by a

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Post-investigation mediation – to read the report, or not to read the report?

The parties and witnesses have been interviewed. The evidence has been reviewed and assessed. The investigation is complete. The report has been rendered. Findings have been made. The organization is ready to act. Now it is time for a restorative process such as mediation In preparation for a post-investigation mediation, a question that often arises

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Investigate or terminate? A simple lesson from an undefended wrongful dismissal claim

Does every workplace harassment complaint need to be investigated? Can a complaint be so minor that it isn’t worth delving into? Horner v. 897469 Ontario Inc. is a recent case that illustrates the risk of overlooking a complaint, and terminating instead of investigating. In this case – an undefended wrongful dismissal claim – the Court

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Restorative approaches to harassment and sexual violence in post-secondary institutions

As a result of Bill 132 coming into force one year ago, colleges and universities in Ontario now have stand-alone policies on sexual violence that outline their institutional responses to addressing complaints of sexual violence.  In addition to the availability of a formal investigation, the majority of these policies also make reference to the possibility

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“What’s taking so long?” – Addressing delay in workplace investigations

One of the pillars to a sound investigation process is timeliness.  Complaints and allegations of inappropriate workplace behaviour must be taken seriously, and demonstrating this seriousness means giving immediate attention to the matter.  That being said, those of us who receive these complaints and allegations are usually juggling many other things, and it is often

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When is circumstantial evidence enough? Lessons from Re SUN and Regina Qu’Appelle Regional Health Authority

Re SUN and Regina Qu’Appelle Regional Health Authority (2017 CanLII 87132 (SK LA)) is a cautionary tale for any employer who has ever relied upon circumstantial evidence to make a finding against an employee. In this case, the Grievor, a Registered Nurse with a history of substance abuse, was alleged to have stolen morphine from

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