QUESTION: I have developed a repetitive strain injury on one of my arms as a result of the work I do. I can go back to work but I can’t do the lifting over my head which forms about 20% of my job. Can I force the employer to allow me back to work do to the 80% of the job that I can do? Are they allowed to reduce my wages if they do this? Is the employer obliged to create a position I can do or put me into a position that someone else has which I can perform?
Employer’s beware. Just because an employee signs a piece of paper you give them agreeing to some new terms of their employment does not mean that the contract is worth the paper it is written on.
Message to all employers: if you have to terminate someone, do it as nicely as you can and try to avoid having them taken from the office to jail by the police. You will pay for it later. A man we will call James was hired to be the executive director of a non-profit corporation in November of 2000. He started with a 6-month probationary period which was completed successfully.
The Ontario Human Rights Code’s
prohibition against discrimination in the workplace begins at the point of hiring. Employers need to be very careful about the questions they ask and the comments they make in the hiring and interview process. “innocent” small talk can sink you.
Question: I have worked for a franchised retail outlet for approximately five years. Last year it was being relocated and the drive was going to be longer. I didn’t really want to commute and was considering resigning. My boss and the owner assured me, however, that if I went with the relocation, when a new assistant manager position came open, I would get it. I was skeptical. I asked the owner how he could promise that when head office might dictate who got the assistant manager position. The owner indicated that he would not be pushed around by head office. I accepted this promise at face value and stayed with my employment when the store relocated. My boss had an affair with one of my fellow employees who had heard about the prospect of me getting an assistant manager position. Suddenly, discussion of that prospect stopped. Eventually my boss quit and went elsewhere, someone else was made assistant manager. When I confronted the owner about his promises, it appeared that the conversation had never taken place. I had imagined the whole thing. Is there anything I can do or could have done?
So just how far does an employer have to go to accommodate the child care obligations of employees?
An employer’s ability to have employees submit to random drug testing or alcohol testing must first meet the requirements of the Human Rights legislation. Specifically section 11 and section 17 of the Human Rights Act of Ontario state:
The vast majority of wrongful dismissal cases are settled between the employer=s and employee=s lawyers long before a Statement of Claim is issued and a lawsuit actually started. When things don=t settle, however, terminated employees sometimes end up before a judge who will decide their case.
The job market is pretty good right now for people with skills. Employers are finding it increasingly difficult to find qualified candidates for top end positions.
This article is being dictated on a recording device just over one inch wide and about four inches long. It would fit nicely in a shirt pocket. If you are a manager thinking of putting one of these in your pocket to record a meeting with an employee or an employee having the same thought, you should probably reconsider.