Tag archives: harassment

Human resources managers can be indirectly liable for harassment

Health and safety of employees is highly protected in France. Employers are  responsible for the prevention of any damage to their employees’ health and safety resulting from their work. Amongst other things, French law requires employers to ensure that their employees are protected from any harassment at work. But another provision of the French Employment … Continue reading

“Promising practices” encouraged by EEOC to prevent retaliation

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has issued its final “Enforcement Guidance on Retaliation and Related Issues” following a six-month public comment period. The guidance replaces the EEOC’s 1988 Compliance Manual section on retaliation. Workplace retaliation claims have been on the rise in recent years and have been the focus of several opinions of the … Continue reading

“What are the latest developments on whistleblowing in the workplace in Germany?”

Apart from the well-known Wiki-leaks, recent prominent cases of whistleblowing such as Lux-leaks, the Panama Papers or the case of the German geriatric nurse Brigitte Heinisch, who was dismissed after revealing the ill-treatment of elderly people in a Berlin retirement home, continue to highlight the continued relevance of the topic “whistleblowing”. While this has resulted … Continue reading

EEOC continues its efforts to incorporate sexual orientation and gender identity into Title VII protections

On March 1, 2016, the EEOC filed two cases with one clear goal: to expand the meaning of “sex” under Title VII. In EEOC v. Scott Medical Health Center, P.C., Case No. 2:16-cv-00225-CB (W.D. Pa.),  the agency alleges that the defendant harassed an openly gay male employee because of his sexual orientation, thereby committing unlawful … Continue reading

Human Rights and Independent Contractors in Ontario

When working with independent contractors or the self-employed, companies should be aware that the Human Rights Code protections may still apply. A recent decision of the Human Rights Tribunal reiterates the fact that discrimination and harassment can be found “with respect to employment” even in the absence of a traditional employer-employee relationship. The decision dealt … Continue reading

Current status of legal protections for sexual orientation and gender identity in employment

As the workforce becomes more and more diverse, sexual orientation and gender identity have become very hot topics in discussions regarding employee rights. It may be surprising to learn that neither is considered a protected class under current federal employment discrimination law in the United States. At last count, however, 32 states, including the District … Continue reading

Sexual harassment in Toronto’s restaurants

Recently, allegations of sexual harassment in the kitchen of a trendy Toronto restaurant have ignited a dialogue about workplace harassment. While this doesn’t excuse it, industry veterans aren’t surprised by the complaint, saying that many of Canada’s restaurants have a workplace culture that is overwhelming male, close-knit, and full of sexualized banter. The employee at … Continue reading

What protection do employees have against discrimination on grounds of age?

To begin with, employment discrimination on grounds of age is not a problem only for workers in a specific age group in Colombia. For instance, young people feel discriminated against because of their lack of experience when seeking jobs for the first time, and the elderly feel rejected and undervalued when they are interested in … Continue reading

Termination for Facebook post upheld by arbitrator – Despite absence of social media policy

The recent decision of United Steelworkers of America, Local 9548 v Tenaris Algoma Tubes Inc, 2014 CanLII 26445 (ON LA) provides an example of how a unionized employee’s off-duty social media behavior can justify dismissal, despite the absence of any reference to social media in the company’s harassment policies. The grievor was a crane operator … Continue reading

Moral harassment: an employee victim of harassment can be compensated twice

Legal context French employment law strictly prohibits acts of moral harassment within a company, employers being required to take all measures necessary to prevent such situations from occurring in the first place. Applicable sanctions in the event of breach of such prohibition can be particularly severe since the employer can face penal sanctions as well … Continue reading

Dealing with end of year work parties

The onset of legal liability in the New Year, following a mishap at the end of year work party, is an unpleasant reality for employers. Employers can leave themselves open to this liability because of misunderstandings about the extent of their powers and responsibilities. The legal reality is that the end of year office function … Continue reading

Case Brief: On punitive and mental distress damages for harassment

In 2012, we reported on an Ontario jury award of approximately $1.5 million damages to a 42-year-old former assistant manager who resigned her employment at Wal-Mart after being verbally abused and harassed by her 32-year-old store manager. At trial, the employee was found entitled to $200,000 for intentional infliction of mental suffering, $1 million in … Continue reading

Employee Not Allowed to Sue Employer For Injuries Resulting From Workplace Harassment

In, Ashraf v SNC Lavalin ATP Inc. (“Ashraf”) an Alberta judge upheld a master’s decision to strike the statement of claim of a worker seeking to sue his employer for injuries resulting from workplace harassment. The Statement of Claim of the Plaintiff was struck on the grounds that the Alberta Worker’s Compensation Act bars all rights … Continue reading

Avoiding the pitfalls of hosting a work party in the UK

This post was contributed by Lindsey Hooper, Associate, Norton Rose Fulbright LLP (London)  Work parties over the Christmas period have become somewhat of a tradition in the UK but they can be a real headache for employers. Here are some handy tips for avoiding common “work party” pitfalls. Location, location, location The location of a … Continue reading
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