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Serious insight for serious situations.

Serious insight for serious situations.

A refresher on the “duty of care” – Who do we owe it to? | Petit rappel sur le « devoir de diligence », à qui est-il dû ?

Workplace investigations have been around for quite some time as a way for diligent employers to address potential issues hindering the workplace. If, as a result of its long-standing use, they no longer appear cryptic in the eyes of some employees and employers, they still carry a perfume of mystery and elicit questions for many others. In my practice, most of the questions I hear from parties and witnesses in an investigation are procedure-based, pertaining to confidentiality or the length of the process.

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Investigations involving white fragility

If you are an investigator like me, you may have noticed the term “white fragility” has emerged in some of your cases, especially when the investigation involves claims of race-based harassment and/or discrimination.  This may be as part of a complainant’s allegation, as in the respondent engaged in “white fragility,” or as part of a respondent’s response, as in “this is not a case of ‘white fragility’.” The concept has sparked much debate, as not everyone agrees with it. 

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Ontario to regulate campus employee-student sexual misconduct with Bill 26

On October 27, 2022, the Ontario government announced Bill 26, Strengthening Post-secondary Institutions and Students Act, 2022 (“Bill 26”). Beyond finalizing the legal name change of the former Ryerson University to the now Toronto Metropolitan University, Bill 26 proposes new rules on how Ontario post-secondary institutions (“PSI” or “PSIs”)…

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‘Tis the season… for workplace investigations? | Joyeuses… enquêtes en milieu de travail ?

Holiday season is almost here, and as workplace investigators, we know that during office holiday parties, some employees, managers, or directors who may have had one or two too many drinks sometimes engage in different types of misconduct – including vexatious comments or jokes, and unwelcome sexual advances or physical contact – that negatively impact individuals and that can even poison the work environment. This is borne out by the case law.

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A workplace investigator’s thoughts and takeaways on a recent NBA investigation

If you’re a fan of the NBA (“the League”), as I am, you may have heard about two high profile stories that sprang up during the off-season. In the Western Conference, Robert Sarver, the owner of the Phoenix Suns , was suspended for one year and fined $10 million, following a large investigation into allegations of racism, misogyny, and bullying in the workplace (the details of which I will briefly get into later).

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One-party workplace investigations: What to do when a party won’t participate

An investigation usually involves a complainant and a respondent. The basic premise is that as workplace investigators, we hear what each party has to say, collect other relevant evidence, and then weigh the evidence to decide whether, on a balance of probabilities, the allegations are substantiated.

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