Bad Behaviour 2.0: Part 2--Employees Getting Away With...

Author:Bowal, Peter


We looked through the judicial and arbitral decisions and found ten more random instances of appalling employee behaviour that Canadian courts and arbitrators excused. The first five cases can be found in Part 1 of this article. In these cases, the employer fired the employee, but the court or arbitrator found no legal basis to do so, and ordered the employer to pay damages for wrongful dismissal and court costs.

  1. Hendrickson Spring--Stratford Operations v United Steelworkers Local 8773

    Avey (20-year employee) and Illman (5-year employee) used very harsh, profane and demeaning remarks to a co-worker at work (such as "you are a nobody to me" and "Brian is a fag"). Avey was accused of throwing a helmet at him and threatening physical harm against him. In one outburst, Illman shrieked: "[y]ou are nothing but a fucking big baby and a whining cry baby. I will take you out you fucking asshole, any place, any time. I will kick the fucking shit out of you right here, right now, so keep your fucking mouth shut." They showed no remorse. After they were fired in 2015, the arbitrator considered their dismissal too severe and they were both reinstated.

  2. Ontario Nurses' Association v Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre

    An unidentified registered nurse and was fired for stealing different narcotics from her hospital employer and related breaches of trust and professional standards. She even had them in her jacket when she was being investigated and interviewed by the hospital. She falsified patient records to cover up the thefts which took place over 3 years. Her union said she did it because she was addicted to the drugs. The arbitrator reinstated the nurse to her job. One is reminded of Elizabeth Wettlaufer who admitted to killing eight senior patients in her care between 2007 and 2014 by administering lethal doses of insulin.

  3. Kim v. International Triathlon Union

    Kim, in the sensitive position of communications manager for the headquarters (located in Vancouver) of world triathlon unleashed her inner frustrated voice a little too much and too often on social media. She was highly critical of her boss and went off on personal derogatory and defamatory outbursts which caused public relations problems for her employer. She continued to post and even acknowledged she could get in trouble for doing so. This case was the subject of an earlier tandem of LawNow columns (here and here). Kim's firing in 2012 was found to be wrongful two years...

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