Unpaid work

Recently, Canadian media have been examining the experiences of people, often students or those at the very outset of their working careers, who work in unpaid positions as interns. It may come as no surprise but an unpaid position cannot be created simply by designating someone or a position as an intern. Nor can it […]

Spring freshet

Wooden toy charts the course of a career We all got our start as woodworkers somewhere. Somehow. Some occurrence, possibly quite by chance, got us started. I started by building little toy wooden boats. It was before I started school, so I was young. My experience splitting firewood had familiarized me with handling an axe, […]

Compensation benefits

Risks of dismissing a worker By Daniel Mayer Dismissing a worker who is receiving loss of earnings (“LOE”) benefits from the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (“WSIB”) is fraught with risk. An employer might have just cause to terminate the worker’s employment, and might believe that LOE benefits will cease after termination, but there is […]

Ruling on car wash

Training and supervision By Jeremy Warning On November 30, 2012, the Ontario Court of Justice released its decision in R. v. 679052 Ontario Limited (c.o.b. as Auction Reconditioning Centre), 2012 ONCJ 747 (CanLII).The Auction Reconditioning Centre (“Company”) operated a business in which it cleaned automobiles at its facility in Milton, Ont. This cleaning service was […]

Smart hands

Intelligence from making things When we use the term intelligence, it is very likely that we are talking about mental functioning. The IQ tests that we will have taken will have been addressed to how our minds work. Our cerebral abilities will have been measured. And, as a consequence, we will have gained a sense […]

If remarks get offensive

Employers should resist knee-jerk reactions By Michelle MacGillivray If an employee has offensive opinions, and expresses these opinions publicly, there are steps an employer can take, but these situations must be approached with caution. Generally, an offensive remark is not enough to justify terminating an employee for just cause, either in unionized or non-unionized workplaces. […]

From Plato to Carnegie

A brief history of industrial specialization “All things will be produced in superior quantity and quality, and with greater ease, when each man works at a single occupation, in accordance with his natural gifts, and at the right moment, without meddling with anything else.” (Plato, late 5th century B.C.) This will establish Plato as the […]

Christmas Eve tragedy

Criminalizing employer conduct By Jeremy Warning and Christina Hall Employers across Canada should be aware of the possible implications arising from the recent guilty plea to corporate criminal negligence charges by Metron Construction Corporation. The guilty plea was entered in an Ontario courtroom on July 13, 2012, and Metron was sentenced to pay a $200,000 […]

Up the creek

Only wood does the job I found myself, a bit surprisingly, walking down the street in the morning with a canoe paddle in my hand. Fortunately, it was a well-made paddle, with a good balance so that I could easily and lightly carry it, blade to the back and grip pointing forward. It teetered there […]

Discrimination law

Terminating for legitimate business reasons By Michelle MacGillivray and Evan VanDyk When deciding to terminate an individual’s employment, many employers are unaware of the potential human rights implications of this decision. A terminated employee who believes that the decision to terminate their employment may have been based on a prohibited ground of discrimination (such as […]