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Employer must pay damages to employee for "false imprisonment" during theft investigation

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia
Sector: - Retail Trade

In Kalsi v. Greater Vancouver Associate Stores Ltd. 2009 BCSC 287, the BC Supreme Court awarded a fired employee $6,500 in damages for "false imprisonment" during the employer's theft investigation.

Mr. Kalsi had been employed as a mechanic by a Canadian Tire store for 16 years. He was 36 years old and off work on disability at the time the incident occurred.

Specifically, he was accused by the store's security officer of attending to the store on May 20, 2005 and stealing a light bulb for his vehicle.

After confronting Mr. Kalsi, the security officer told Mr. Kalsi to follow him up to the lunchroom. It was Mr. Kalsi's evidence that, once in the lunchroom:  read more »

Sexual harassment at Christmas party and dishonesty during investigation lead to senior employee's dismissal

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia

The plaintiff's employment with Marriot Hotels of Canada Ltd. was terminated for cause on February 1, 2007. He was 46 years old, had been employed by the hotel for 22 years and held the position of Director of Sales and Marketing.

Prior to the incidents in question, the plaintiff's employment record was free of any discipline.

The defendant hotel alleged cause for dismissal based on the fact that the plaintiff:

  • Was a senior manager with responsibilities for supervising the company holiday party, permitted the excessive consumption of alcohol, engaged in sexually suggestive dancing, and condoned an "after-party" where Marriott employees drank heavily;
  • Engaged in inappropriate sexual touching with a female subordinate in the bathroom at the after-party; and
  • Was dishonest when he denied the sexual touching allegation during the defendant's investigation of his misconduct.

Distribution of drink tickets, alcohol consumption and suggestive dancing

In relation to these allegations, the court found that:  read more »

Ontario Court of Appeal refuses to recognize tort of negligent investigation against employer

Jurisdiction: - Ontario

The Ontario Court of Appeal refused to recognize the tort of negligent investigation against employer in Correia v. Canac Kitchens, 2008 ONCA 506. You can read a summary of the case in the July 4, 2008 issue of the Lawyer's Weekly found here.

"The Ability, Obligation and Role of a Trade Union to Represent its Members in Employer Investigations"

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia

Alan E. Black, Q.C. and Pamela Costanzo, at Black, Gropper & Company in Vancouver, have written a paper on "The Ability, Obligation and Role of a Trade Union to Represent its Members in Employer Investigations". The paper was prepared for the Insight Information Western Canada Labour Relations conference held on January 30-31, 2007 in Vancouver.