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Serious insight for serious situations.

Serious insight for serious situations.

#4 Discriminatory grounds such as family status, age, marital status, etc. that deal with the duty to accommodate

This posting builds upon an earlier one entitled “#2 Mental health or physical disabilities that deal with the duty to accommodate”. As indicated in that post, the duty to accommodate is always a tricky exercise and one that should be treated with the utmost circumspection. The Accommodation Process The Ontario Human Rights Code lists a

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Understanding Creed

Recently, the Ontario Human Rights Commission released its Policy on preventing discrimination based on creed, updating their previous creed-related policy from 1996. Like other recent Commission policies on topics such as gender identity/expression and family status, the Policy provides clarity on the definition of the ground, while also providing guidance for employers on specific situations

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Abstinence is Best?

The people who ran the Northern Lights Manor (the “Manor”), a personal care home in Flin Flon, Manitoba, certainly thought so.  However, their steadfast belief in this approach to dealing with alcohol addiction has now led to a very costly legal decision against the Manor. Linda Horrocks worked at the Manor as a health care

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Failure to Disclose Addiction Pursuant to Company Policy Justifies Employee Dismissal

Supporting an employee coping with an addiction is a challenging workplace issue particularly where human rights legislation requires accommodation of employees facing addiction and dependency. But what happens when the employee denies having an addiction and it can or does affect the core duties of the employee? That’s precisely the circumstance that Elk Valley Coal

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Accommodation – You can’t always get what you want

A Nova Scotia Human Rights Board of Inquiry recently tackled an accommodation issue in LeFrense v. IBM Canada Ltd., 2015, CanLII 1720 (NS HRC). Board Chair, Walter Thompson Q.C., found that IBM did everything within its power to assist its employee, Mr. LeFrense, in returning to the workplace and accommodating his sleep apnea in accordance

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The Vaccination Debate and the Workplace: Implementing Mandatory Vaccination Policies

The vaccination debate has been raging over the last few months. Scientists, doctors, parents and even celebrities have shared their pro and anti-vaccination stances. The “anti-vaxx” controversy has revolved mainly around school-age children and their vulnerability to long-dormant diseases, however the controversy is also salient for employers in the broader workplace context. Last week, a

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On the First Day of Christmas…

If, like me, you estimate that you’ve heard this holiday tune about a million times, then you have probably wondered on more than one occasion, what kind of gifts are these?  A partridge?  I don’t care that it comes with a pear tree. Hens? Geese? I mean, other than the five golden rings (to which

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When Does An Employer’s Accommodation Actions Become Harassment?

When an employee requires accommodation following an injury or onset of a disability, an employer is often unsure where to draw the line in their communications and interactions with the employee. Accommodation is a collaborative process and it is important that the employer receives information and cooperation from the employee. At the same time, employees

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