Susan Kootnekoff is the founder of Inspire Law, an Okanagan based-law practice. She has been practicing law since 1994, with brief stints away to begin raising children. Susan has experience in many areas of law, but is most drawn to areas in which she can make a positive difference in people’s lives, including employment law. She has been a member of the Law Society of Alberta since 1994 and a member of the Law Society of British Columbia since 2015. Susan grew up in Saskatchewan. Her parents were both entrepreneurs, and her father was also a union leader who worked tirelessly to improve the lives of workers. Before moving to B.C., Susan practiced law in both Calgary and Fort McMurray, AB. Living and practicing law in Fort McMurray made a lasting impression on Susan. It was in this isolated and unique community that her interest in employment law, and Canada’s oil sands industry, took hold.                                In 2013, Susan moved to the Okanagan with her family, where she currently resides. Photo: Contributed

Susan Kootnekoff is the founder of Inspire Law, an Okanagan based-law practice. She has been practicing law since 1994, with brief stints away to begin raising children. Susan has experience in many areas of law, but is most drawn to areas in which she can make a positive difference in people’s lives, including employment law. She has been a member of the Law Society of Alberta since 1994 and a member of the Law Society of British Columbia since 2015. Susan grew up in Saskatchewan. Her parents were both entrepreneurs, and her father was also a union leader who worked tirelessly to improve the lives of workers. Before moving to B.C., Susan practiced law in both Calgary and Fort McMurray, AB. Living and practicing law in Fort McMurray made a lasting impression on Susan. It was in this isolated and unique community that her interest in employment law, and Canada’s oil sands industry, took hold. In 2013, Susan moved to the Okanagan with her family, where she currently resides. Photo: Contributed

Kootnekoff: New workplace harassment and violence requirements

Susan Kootnekoff is the founder of Inspire Law, her diverse legal career spans over 20 years.

New Workplace Harassment & Violence Requirements for Federal Workplaces (Part 1) July 12, 2020

Bill C-65, An Act to amend the Canada Labour Code (harassment and violence), the Parliamentary Employment and Staff Relations Act and the Budget Implementation Act, 2017, No. 1, received Royal Assent on October 25, 2018.

Bill C-65 will be force on January 1, 2021. Several requirements are left to be prescribed by regulation.

On June 24, 2020, the federal government published the Work Place Harassment and Violence Regulations (Regulations).

The Regulations contain requirements on federally regulated employers to comply with their obligations under the Canada Labour Code (CLC) harassment and violence prevention provisions. This includes requirements to investigate, record, report and take measures to prevent workplace harassment and violence and to provide certain training to their staff. These requirements are summarized in this article and next week’s article.

Federally regulated employers and workers who may be affected ought to review these provisions closely, as many nuances are included within them.

“Harassment and violence” is defined to mean “any action, conduct or comment, including of a sexual nature, that can reasonably be expected to cause offence, humiliation or other physical or psychological injury or illness to an employee, including any prescribed action, conduct or comment.” This extends beyond sexual harassment and violence.

Under the Regulations, employers must take certain steps jointly with the “applicable partner.” The “applicable partner” is the policy committee, or if there is no such committee then the workplace committee or health and safety representative. If joint agreement is not achieved on any required step, then the employer’s decision prevails. Certain records must be kept regarding this.

The new requirements include:

  • Workplace assessment – An employer and the applicable partner must jointly assess the workplace, identify risk factors and implement preventive measures. Certain factors must be identified. Within six months of identifying the risk factors, the employer and the applicable partner must jointly develop preventive measures that satisfy the requirements, and develop and implement those measures. Employers must also ensure that those it directs to conduct these steps have the training, education or experience to do so.
  • Workplace Harassment and Violence Prevention Policy – The employer and the applicable partner must jointly develop a workplace harassment and violence prevention policy. The policy must contain certain items. This includes a summary of the training that will be provided, a summary of the resolution process, a summary of the emergency procedures to be implemented when there is immediate or threatened danger to an employee’s health and safety, how the employer will protect participants’ privacy, a description of the records available to those involved, the support measures available to employees, and the name of the person designated to receive complaints made under s. 127.1(1) of the CLC.
  • Emergency Procedures – The employer and the applicable partner must jointly develop emergency procedures to be implemented if an immediate danger is posed or is threatened to an employee’s health and safety.

The employer must make readily available to employees in printed and electronic form Part II of the CLC, the Regulations, a statement of the employer’s general policy concerning the health and safety at work of employees, and certain other information.

The employer must make the Emergency Procedures available to all employees. After each implementation of the procedures, the employer and the applicable partner must jointly review them and if necessary, update them.

Additional requirements include training, resolution processes and records and reporting requirements. Next week we will look at these additional requirements.

The content of this article is intended to provide very general thoughts and general information, not to provide legal advice. Specialist advice from a qualified legal professional should be sought about your specific circumstances.

If you would like to reach us, we may be reached through our website, at www.inspirelaw.ca.

In case you missed it?

Kootnekoff: B.C. Violated French Education Rights

To report a typo, email:
newstips@kelownacapnews.com
.


@KelownaCapNews
newstips@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Columnist

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Darrell RIchards and his Harley Davidson Streetglide in front of Discovery House in Penticton on Nov. 5. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)
Penticton biker still in running to win custom chopper competition

Darrell Richards is sitting in first in the final round of the group stage

Penticton law courts
Osoyoos child sex offender in court

Shawn Titus, 37, is charged with possession of child porn

One of the greatest Christmas traditions in Oliver is the Oliver Fire Department Christmas Carol Truck that goes around neighbourhoods, sharing Christmas cheer. (OFD photo)
Oliver fire hall siren to signal for holiday lights tonight at 6:30 p.m.

Oliver would normally be celebrating Light Up, but the fire hall is starting a new tradition

Grand Forks’ Roly Russell met with The Gazette after he was named Parliamentary Secretary for Rural Development Thursday, Nov. 26. Photo: Laurie Tritschler
NDP’s Roly Russell named secretary for rural development

Russell formerly represented rural Grand Forks on the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary’s elected board

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry update the COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Nov. 23, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C. sets another COVID-19 record with 887 new cases

Another 13 deaths, ties the highest three days ago

(Village of Lumby photo)
Mysterious, loud ‘boom’ shakes North Okanagan residents

Village staff, Earthquakes Canada aren’t sure what caused the explosion-like sound

Clarence Fulton students collect cash and non-perishable food donations for families in need in their community Friday, Nov. 27. (Jennifer Smith  - Morning Star)
North Okanagan students collect food for families in need

Annual event to support nine school families this year

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Take a break from the slopes to discover the rich culture and diversity of Vernon. Michelle Beaudry photo, courtesy Tourism Vernon.
Tourism Vernon could see 40% cut to budget due to COVID-19

New approach to help residents and visitors activate their adventures

Follow public health recommendations, says Interior Health as COVID-19 cases continue to climb in Revelstoke. (Image courtesy CDC)
Revelstoke positve COVID cases grows to 29

Interior Health announced a cluster in the community on Nov. 26

Screenshot of Pastor James Butler giving a sermon at Free Grace Baptist Church in Chilliwack on Nov. 22, 2020. The church has decided to continue in-person services despite a public health order banning worship services that was issued on Nov. 19, 2020. (YouTube)
Two Fraser Valley churches continue in-person services despite public health orders

Pastors say faith groups are unfairly targeted and that charter rights protect their decisions

Leighton Allen Labute faces charges of animal abuse and allegedly has a string of social media accounts depicting disturbing content.
Accused Kelowna hamster killer has trial date set for 2021

Leighton Labute’s three day trial is scheduled for Aug. 16, 2021

(File)
Christmas break extended for UBCO students

Move made to support mental health of students, accommodate ‘overload’ of work

Most Read