Adrian Miedema

Adrian Miedema


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HRTO settlement did not bar employment standards and OHSA complaints relating to time period after settlement

The Ontario Labour Relations Board has held that Minutes of Settlement signed in the settlement of an application at the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario, barred the employee from advancing employment standards and health and...more

11/20/2015 - Canada Employment Standards Act OHSA Ontario Labour Relations Board Settlement

Employer ordered to reinstate labourer fired day after complaining about knee pain, safety issue

An employee has won a reinstatement order under the Occupational Health and Safety Act after the Ontario Labour Relations Board held that he was fired for raising safety issues. The employee complained to a company...more

11/12/2015 - Hiring & Firing OHSA Retaliation Workplace Safety Wrongful Termination

Employee required to produce his medical file to employer in accommodation grievance

After an employee’s union grieved that the employer had failed to return him to work “notwithstanding that he has provided all requested medical information”, the employee has been ordered to produce much of his medical file...more

11/10/2015 - Medical Leave Medical Records OHSA Reasonable Accommodation Unions

When public perception and the law differ: man fired for heckling TV reporter at soccer game is rehired after arbitration process

Just because members of the public call for the firing of an employee for yelling sexual taunts at a TV reporter at a sports match, does not mean that the firing is legally justified, a recent case illustrates....more

11/5/2015 - Arbitration Code of Conduct Hiring & Firing Obscenity Off-Duty Employees Television Programming Television Shows Wrongful Termination

OHSA duties did not require employer to issue public response to “smear campaign” against non-racialized jail employees:...

An adjudicator has held that the Occupational Health and Safety Act‘s “general duty” clause did not require an employer to issue a public response to a “smear campaign” by one employee and his lawyer against non-racialized...more

10/30/2015 - Department of Corrections General Duty Clause OHSA Ontario Human Rights Tribunal Police Prison

Post-accident remedial measures were a “small bit of common-sense engineering”, relevant evidence in finding company guilty of...

An employer’s post-accident efforts to fix a safety issue were relevant to the issue of whether it had violated the Occupational Health and Safety Act at the time of the accident, an Alberta judge has held....more

10/23/2015 - Canada OHSA Workplace Hazards Workplace Injury Workplace Safety

Doctor’s note prescribing “no overtime” was obtained due to labour tensions, not employee’s health: three-day suspension imposed

An employee who obtained a doctor’s note to justify his desire not to work overtime during a labour dispute, deserved a three-day suspension, an arbitrator has held. After the employer announced that it would be reducing...more

10/13/2015 - Arbitration Labor Disputes Medical Leave Wage and Hour Work Suspensions

Alcoholic employee reinstated after employer’s compassionate approach put in question seriousness of previous warnings

There is an old, and somewhat cynical saying, that no good deed goes unpunished. While I personally disagree with that saying, one employer must believe it after a decision it received. In the case, an adjudicator...more

10/8/2015 - Disability Drug & Alcohol Abuse Hiring & Firing

Lawyer’s harassment investigation report was not solicitor-client or litigation privileged: union entitled to a copy, says...

The mere fact that a lawyer prepared an investigation report does not make it privileged, a labour arbitrator has held, granting the union’s request for a subpoena to obtain the report. The Durham Regional Police Association...more

10/6/2015 - Arbitration Harassment Investigations Privileged Documents Subpoenas Unions

Misled by official, company proves “officially induced error”, beats charges

The defence of “officially induced error” is rarely used successfully, but in a recent Highway Traffic Act case, it won the day. A company in the business of construction and snowplowing was charged under the Highway...more

9/29/2015 - Construction Industry Highways Operational Permits

Moving company fined under smoke-free workplace legislation

As one employer learned recently, smoke-free workplace legislation has teeth. According to a Nunavut government press release, a government safety officer, in a workplace inspection, “observed evidence of smoking in the...more

9/24/2015 - Safety Inspections Smoking Bans Workplace Safety

Safety contractor wins appeal of $1,000 administrative penalty under OHSA

Don’t be seen to cause a traffic jam that inconveniences a government health and safety officer. Perhaps that is the real moral of this story. A safety contractor was providing traffic control services on the...more

9/22/2015 - Civil Monetary Penalty Compliance OHSA Roads

Business owner facing criminal and provincial charges in workplace death

Both the RCMP and provincial health and safety officials have laid charges against an owner of a body shop in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia after a worker died. The worker was killed when the vehicle he was working on caught...more

9/17/2015 - Compliance Criminal Negligence OHSA Royal Canadian Mounted Police Workplace Hazards Workplace Injury Workplace Safety Wrongful Death

OLRB orders employer to reinstate apartment building superintendent allegedly fired for reporting workplace violence

The Ontario Labour Relations Board has ordered an employer to reinstate an apartment building “office administrative superintendent” who alleged that she was fired after reporting that her husband, the maintenance...more

9/15/2015 - OLRB Reinstatement Workplace Violence Wrongful Termination

Employee properly fired for workplace violence threats, despite his mental disability: Appeal Court

An employee’s mental disability, unknown to his employer at the time of dismissal, played no role in the reason he was fired.  He was fired because he made violent threats against coworkers, the Ontario Court of Appeal has...more

9/10/2015 - Disability Discrimination Hiring & Firing Workplace Violence Wrongful Termination

Can provincial OHSA legislation apply across borders? Ontario OHSA protects employee for safety concerns raised while temporarily...

The question often arises as to whether occupational health and safety legislation in an employee’s home province protects him or her when temporarily working in another province.  According to one recent Ontario Labour...more

9/8/2015 - OHSA Ontario Labour Relations Board Workplace Safety

Snowplow driver dismissed due to two accidents, not workplace violence “head-butting” complaint

A snowplow driver’s bad driving record, not his workplace violence complaint, was the reason for his dismissal, the Ontario Labour Relations Board has decided. Vehicle safety and safe road conduct were important to the...more

9/3/2015 - Hiring & Firing OLRB Retaliation Workplace Safety

“Discussing inappropriate personal matters at work”, aggressive conduct, gets employee fired for cause

An employee on a “last-chance” agreement was fired for cause for his “aggressive, condescending and rude” behaviour including discussing sensitive personal matters at work. The employee had worked at the company for 28...more

9/1/2015 - Arbitration Arbitration Agreements Employment Policies Harassment Hiring & Firing Mediation Workplace Bullying

Arbitration board imposes 24-hour firefighter shift, despite employer’s safety concerns

An interest arbitration board has imposed a 24-hour shift for firefighters employed by the Ontario City of St. Catharines, despite the city’s strenuous objections based largely on safety concerns. The City and...more

8/27/2015 - Arbitration Firemen Unions Wage and Hour Work Schedules

U.S. construction companies and manager face fines of nearly $2 million for exposing workers to asbestos

The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OHSA) has cited a construction company and its manager for asbestos-related violations and imposed fines of almost $2 million.  Safety regulators are increasingly taking...more

8/25/2015 - Asbestos Asbestos Litigation Construction Industry Foreign Workers OSHA Safety Inspections Workplace Hazards Wrongful Termination

Two superintendents fined for OHSA violations in scissor lift fatality

Two superintendents have been found guilty of offences under Ontario’s Occupational Health and Safety Act and fined $4,000 each after a worker died when a scissor lift was knocked over by a garage door. The accident...more

8/13/2015 - Fines Heavy Equipment Ministry of Labour OHSA Workplace Injury Wrongful Death

Employee guilty of “reckless” speeding in mine trolley: dismissal upheld

Unsafe operation of equipment is an easy way to get dismissed or charged with Occupational Health and Safety Act – or sometimes even criminal – offences. A labour arbitrator has upheld the dismissal of a mining employee for...more

8/5/2015 - Arbitration Canada Heavy Equipment Mining OHSA Reckless Driving Workplace Safety

“Zero tolerance” policy on drugs in workplace upheld by human rights tribunal where employee did not have “marijuana card”

An employee who smoked marijuana on the job without legal and medical authorization was not discriminated against when dismissed under his employer’s “zero tolerance” policy, the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal has...more

7/31/2015 - Employment Policies Hiring & Firing Marijuana Medical Marijuana OHSA Tribunals Zero Tolerance Policies

MOL engineer not qualified to give expert evidence: he was too involved in the investigation, too closely identified with...

An Ontario judge has refused to permit a professional engineer employed with the Ontario Ministry of Labour to testify as an expert in a health and safety prosecution. A company was charged under the Occupational Health...more

7/23/2015 - Construction Industry Expert Testimony Ministry of Labour OHSA Ontario Workplace Injury Wrongful Death

FOI adjudicator denies access to MOL inspector’s reasons for recommending no OHSA charges against employer

An adjudicator with the office of Ontario’s Information and Privacy Commissioner has denied access to a Ministry of Labour inspector’s reasons for recommending that Occupational Health and Safety Act charges not be laid...more

7/17/2015 - Investigations Migrant Workers Ministry of Labour OHSA Ontario Public Records Workplace Safety

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