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Serious insight for serious situations.

Serious insight for serious situations.

He said, she said: Assessing credibility and Bill 132

With Bill 132 set to become law on September 8, 2016 for employers, and, January 1, 2017 for colleges and universities, organizations will have a statutory obligation to investigate workplace sexual harassment and sexual violence allegations and report on the findings. As the Bill 132 changes appertain to colleges and universities, sexual violence is defined

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Managerial responsibility – workplace complaints

I had the opportunity to participate recently in a discussion on managerial action/inaction in relation to harassment complaints. One of the participants commented that it was hard to believe, but true, that there were still managers in her workplace who did not take action of any sort after an employee had reported concerns of harassment

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Workplace investigations: Interviews, note taking and other best practices

The decision in Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco & Grain Millers International Union, Local 410 v. Canada Bread Company Limited, 2015 CanLII 20939 (NL LA) was interesting not only for its outcome, but equally for the description of the workplace investigation conducted into the horseplay/violence incident giving rise to the grievance arbitration. This incident occurred on April

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“Savoir faire” – Conducting workplace investigations in my second language

I grew up speaking French. From the time that I was little and playing with my friends in the neighbourhood, we spoke French or English depending upon what words came to mind. We lived in a community with English families, French families or bilingual families so language was never a dividing line – we were

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Not 100% recovered yet? No job … Not so says Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission

Are we still having the discussion that an employee needs to be 100% recovered from an injury before she/he can return to work? According to a recent Nova Scotia Human Rights Board of Enquiry decision in Tanner v. Alumitech Distribution Centre Ltd., 2015 CanLII 15118 (NS HRC) apparently so. John Tanner was involved in a

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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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Credibility assessment: No problem for NSHRC Board of Inquiry Chair

I would venture to say that many, if not most of us have struggled with credibility assessments in our practices. Whether interviewing witnesses in workplace investigations or as legal counsel preparing clients to give evidence, we are alive to what is being said and how it is being received. More often than not decisions arising

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Atlantic provincial governments’ respectful workplace policies – the must haves

A client recently asked if I knew of any Respectful Workplace Policies that could be used as a framework for creating their own policy. While I am familiar with a number of large organizations’ policies, I began wondering where I would turn if I was to begin searching for greater insight into what should go

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