Balancing work and life is a challenge. We all wish we could take time off from work for every personal and family activity that takes place during work hours and in most provinces, human rights laws have created protection against what is referred to as “family status” discrimination. There has been much confusion over the interpretion of this language. Employees want time off and flexible schedules to spend time with their families. Employers need employees to be working at certain times and, for operational needs, often cannot accommodate every request - even if they wanted to. Conflicting decisions from different . . . [more]
Archive for ‘Substantive Law’
The Ontario Court of Appeal has ruled in a monumental employment law claim which included intentional infliction of mental suffering, affirming an unprecedented award in Boucher v. Wal-Mart Canada Corp.
The case dealt with a workplace conflict where the plaintiff claimed to be constructively dismissed. The jury found for the plaintiff and awarded 20 weeks salary in damages, the amount specified in her employment contract, $200,000 in aggravated damages against the employer for the manner of dismissal, and $1,000,000 in punitive damages. The jury also awarded an additional $100,000 for intentional infliction of mental suffering against the manager with . . . [more]
In five days, Justice Clément Gascon of the Cour d’Appel will assume Justice Fish’s seat on the Supreme Court.
The announcement from the Prime Minister’s office is terse:
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« Je suis ravi d’annoncer la nomination de M. le juge Clément Gascon à la Cour suprême du Canada. M. le juge Gascon, qui siège actuellement à la Cour d’appel du Québec, possède un important bagage d’expérience et de connaissances juridiques dont profitera grandement cette importante institution canadienne. Sa nomination survient au terme de vastes consultations menées auprès d’éminents membres du milieu juridique du Québec. » –
Three delightful legal curios remind us that when neighbours fall out, balance and judgment cascade out the window – or are defenestrated.
Let’s start with Monsieur Proust – who was sensitive beyond sensitivity. Yet even a cork-lined writing room couldn’t shield him from shoes on wooden floors and thin walls, from the harp-playing wife of an American dentist, Marie Williams.
Gallimard published the recently found letters as an epistolary novel, Lettres à sa voisine, last year. The catalogue descibes it thus::
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«C’est un vrai petit roman, fondé sur une surprise : la découverte de ces vingt-trois lettres
All Quebec Parties Agree to Re-Table Assisted Suicide Bill and Motion Raising Question of Public Interest
Twenty-month old Jaylene Redhead was killed by her mother on June 29, 2009 while both were resident in a second-stage housing facility in Winnipeg. Jaylene had been apprehended from her mother’s care at birth by Awasis Agency of Northern Manitoba but had been returned to her mother’s care at the Native Women’s Transition Centre in the months before her death.
The Inquest Report of Judge Lawrence Allen into her death, released May 23, reveals the awful details of this child’s short life. The inquest was called in 2011 under the provisions of Manitoba’s Fatality Inquiries Act to:
- inquire into the
The Supreme Court of Canada decision in McCormick v. Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP, mentioned recently by Simon Chester, will have implications beyond just how human rights legislation applies to mandatory retirement provisions in partnership agreements. Because such provisions will be upheld, firms can be expected to include and rely on them further, and the baby boomer population of lawyers who are quickly approaching retirement age may now expect a forced retirement from partnership.
By some weird synchronicity, the Supreme Courts in both the United Kingdom and Canada in the last 24 hours have considered the nature of partnerships and the extent to which employment law protections also applied to partners.
Yesterday’s decision in Clyde & Co LLP and another (Respondents) v Bates van Winklehof (Appellant)  UKSC 32 held that a junior partner (unhelpfully called an Equity Partner) in a London firm was protected by the whistle-blowing protections of the Employment Rights Act 1996. She had been involved in a rather dubious file in Tanzania and reported to the firm’s money laundering reporting . . . [more]
There are no such things as natural disasters, only situations with disastrous consequences due to lack of social preparedness. This sentiment was a quite common one to encounter during my time working in emergency management. For example, Ilan Kelman states,
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The term “natural disaster” is often used to refer to a disaster which involves an event originating in the environment. The term has led to connotations that the disaster is caused by nature or that these disasters are the natural state of affairs. In many belief systems, including Western thought, deities often cause “natural disasters” to punish humanity or