In Ontario, where I work, we have just entered stage 2 of re-opening the economy, which includes allowing people to return to workplaces that have thus far been closed. Even if a business was deemed essential, and employees continued to work remotely, now that things are “thawing” we anticipate that more employees will return to the physical workplace.
Recently the Ontario Court of Appeal released its decision in R. v. Sullivan, a case involving the automatism defence. For those who don’t know, this defence can potentially be raised when an individual enters a state of impaired consciousness in which they are capable of acting but have no voluntary control over those actions¹. Through amendments to the Criminal Code of Canada in the mid-90s, the defence of automatism cannot be used for violent offences when the automatism is brought on by self-induced intoxication.
I recently watched a video presentation by Kain Ramsay, teacher of applied psychology, on the topic of perceptual variances in the context of cognitive behavioural therapy. He started the presentation with a demonstration. He showed how the number “8” could be interpreted or perceived differently by multiple persons. He demonstrated that the image could be viewed by some as exactly what it is, the number 8. Others may interpret it as the infinity sign; to others it may just look like a pretzel; while to another person, it may be the symbol for DNA.
We have all heard of the myth of Pandora’s Box – a box containing many evils that once released into the world could not be put back. As a third-party workplace investigator, I often think of clients having a Pandora’s Box full of information that, if released, could be prejudicial and could lead to an eventual claim of bias.