Canadian HR Reporter

November 30, 2015

Canadian HR Reporter is the national journal of human resource management. It features the latest workplace news, HR best practices, employment law commentary and tools and tips for employers to get the most out of their workforce.

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CANADIAN HR REPORTER November 30, 2015 18 INSIGHT TRANSPARENCY BACKFIRES MOOSE JAW — Police in Moose Jaw found themselves in hot water recently when one offi cer's tweet appeared to make fun of an inmate: "Adult female prisoner asked offi - cers to pass around a hat today to help her with bail money. #short- ofthegoal. #shesstillhere #wedont- wearhats." e tweet was deleted and an apology was issued for the "inappropriate" message, but many people demanded more account- ability, according to Global News. An investigation into the matter was launched through the Pub- lic Complaints Commission, said Rick Bourassa, chief of the Moose Jaw Police Service, and the offi cer responsible had their social media privileges revoked. e force is also speeding up the process of creating an offi cial social media policy. " e notion behind us moving to social media was to enhance our open- ness and transparency and our accountability. We have done that and now that we have been open and transparent we have been held accountable; and that's the way it should be," said Bourassa. MUZZLED NO MORE OTTAWA — With the switch in government also came changes to the control of information. e Conservatives brought in a restrictive communications policy that required media requests to federal government scientists to be approved by a minister's offi ce, according to CBC News. But the Facebook post of a mother of a biologist in British Columbia went viral when she shared a "spirit- lifting" status update from her son's Facebook page: "We were told that it's OK to talk to the media or anyone about what we do without permission. at's how surreal it was. at's how things changed overnight." Jody Paterson's son said the Department of Fisheries and Oceans were told the muzzle order on scientists had been lifted at an all-staff meeting. Navdeep Bains, the new minister of innovation, science and economic development, announced the policy change two days after Justin Trudeau and his cabinet were sworn in: "Our government values science and will treat scientists with respect. at is why government scientists and experts will be able to speak freely about their work to the media and the public." HOPEFULLY HE DOESN'T TEXT AND DRIVE TOO NEW YORK CITY — Drivers, watch your seats: A man with a long history of pretending to be a transit worker was arrested for the 30th time in mid-November after stealing a commercial passenger bus. Darius McCollum was spot- ted by police offi cers driving the Greyhound bus down a street in Brooklyn. e man became some- what of a celebrity for escapades that began in 1981 at age 15, ac- cording to the Associated Press, when he drove a subway train six stops. Over the years, McCollum has had many transit-related ar- rests and after he was paroled for a bus theft in 2013, he said he planned to fi nd a therapist. "I can't aff ord to get arrested again, I can't deal with the jail thing — it's too much, the gang mentality." ARRESTING DEVELOPMENT IN JOB SEARCH WAYNE COUNTY, MICH. — One 25-year-old man found out recently he might want to take greater care with his job search when he applied for a job as offi - cer at a Michigan sheriff 's depart- ment — and a background check revealed he was wanted in Ken- tucky on sexual assault charges. John Wesley Rose's initial applica- tion in September raised no issues because the outstanding warrant had not been entered into the national database, but it popped up later when he was asked to complete paperwork and fi nalize the employment application. At that point, the job applicant was arrested and set to return to Ken- tucky, according to Paula Bridges, spokesperson for the Wayne County Sheriff 's Offi ce. W EIRD ORKPLACE THE Vol. 28 No. 20 – November 30, 2015 PUBLISHED BY Thomson Reuters Canada Ltd. One Corporate Plaza 2075 Kennedy Rd. Toronto, ON M1T 3V4 ©Copyright 2015 by Thomson Reuters Canada Ltd. All rights reserved. CANADIAN HR REPORTER is published 21 times a year. Publications Mail – Agreement # 40065782 Registration # 9496 – ISSN 0838-228X Director, Carswell Media: Karen Lorimer - (416) 649-9411 Publisher: (on leave) John Hobel - (416) 298-5197 EDITORIAL Acting Publisher/Editor in Chief: Todd Humber - (416) 298-5196 Editor/Supervisor: Sarah Dobson - (416) 649-7896 Senior Editor: Liz Bernier - (416) 649-7837 Employment Law Editor: Jeffrey R. Smith - (416) 649-7881 Labour Relations News Editor: Sabrina Nanji - (416) 649-9348 Labour Relations News Editor: Liz Foster - (416) 298-5129 Web/IT Co-ordinator: Mina Patel - (416) 649-7879 ADVERTISING Account Executive: Stephen Hill (on leave) Account Executive: Nicholas Cholodny - (647) 537-4705 Production Co-ordinator: Pamela Menezes - (416) 649-9298 MARKETING AND CIRCULATION Marketing & Audience Development Manager: Robert Symes - (416) 649-9551 Marketing Co-ordinator: Keith Fulford - (416) 649-9585 PRODUCTION Manager, Media Production: Lisa Drummond - (416) 649-9415 Art Director: Dave Escuadro SUBSCRIPTIONS Annual subscription: $169 (plus GST) GST#: 897 176 350 RT To subscribe, call one of the customer service numbers listed above or visit Address changes and returns: Send changes and undeliverable Canadian addresses to: SUBSCRIBER SERVICES Canadian HR Reporter One Corporate Plaza 2075 Kennedy Rd. Toronto, ON M1T 3V4 CUSTOMER SERVICE Call: (416) 609-3800 (Toronto) (800) 387-5164 (outside Toronto) Fax: (416) 298-5082 (Toronto) (877) 750-9041 (outside Toronto) Email: carswell.customerrelations@ LETTERS TO THE EDITOR CHRR reserves the right to edit for length and clarity. Todd Humber EDITOR'S NOTES It's 2015 and it's never OK I t's interesting to note all three of the stories on the cover of this issue have something to do with sexual harassment. is was not a purposeful strategy by the editors here — it's just that the top three stories all touched on it: the rehiring of the Hydro One worker who was fired af- ter he endorsed rude comments made on live TV to a female re- porter; the controversy around requiring female wait staff to wear skimpy outfi ts; and Ontario's proposed new sexual harassment legislation. I've personally witnessed sex- ual harassment in the workplace. Unfortunately, I'm willing to bet you've dealt with it too — it is so systemic, you don't have to be in- volved in HR or workplace law to encounter it. The first time it happened in front of me, I was a little shellshocked. I didn't know how to react — I was young and the perpetrator was much older and in a senior position, at a compa- ny that was a key client. My col- league, the victim, was very upset initially but eventually shrugged it off as "Guys being guys. ey're just disgusting." Far too many managers are sim- ply not equipped to deal with an allegation or incident appropri- ately. Here's a perfect example: A good friend of mine, who works in a unionized environment, was subjected to sexual harassment shortly after she started a new job. e perpetrator had more than 20 years under his belt. At fi rst, it was just uncomfortable for her but she liked the job so she just grinned and beared it, afraid to ruffl e any feathers while on pro- bation. But when his advances got more aggressive, she worked up the courage to go to HR. e reaction from HR was so disappointing — there was no investigation, just a suggestion that my friend get in touch with the perpetrator and sit down face to face with him to sort out the problem. e ultimate solution was to transfer my friend to another lo- cation, leaving the perpetrator es- sentially unpunished (other than a bit of public shaming) and free to prey on other victims. Sexual harassment is an un- comfortable subject to discuss. But it's also one that's not going away, which means managers — and especially HR professionals — need the tools and training to tackle it appropriately. Debora De Angelis, a victim of workplace sexual harassment, made an important point in her interview with Sarah Dobson — despite increasing awareness of the issue, there is still a lot of ha- rassment happening. Clearly, the culture isn't chang- ing fast enough. A laissez faire ap- proach will not solve it. In light of the proposed legisla- tive changes, employers with staff in Ontario need to review policies and procedures relating to sexual harassment. One of the interest- ing changes is the Ministry of Labour could order a third-party investigation (at the employer's cost) if an investigation isn't done or if the investigation is botched and handled poorly. One of the best lines to come out of our new prime minister's mouth occurred when he was asked why he went to such lengths to ensure his new cabinet was eth- nically and gender-diverse. "Because it's 2015," said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. at same calendar applies to sexual harassment. Any step we can take to make it more taboo, and evoke the culture change De Angelis rightly points out is sorely lacking, is very welcome. Changes at Canadian HR Reporter Please join me in congratulating Sarah Dobson, who has been pro- moted to the role of editor/super- visor at Canadian HR Reporter. Sarah joined omson Reuters in 2007 and has taken a leadership role in editorial coverage. You can reach her at sarah.dobson@thom- Liz Bernier has been promoted to the role of senior editor for Ca- nadian HR Reporter. Liz joined the omson Reuters family in 2014. You can reach her at liz.ber- You will also see some new by- lines appearing throughout the publication — Sabrina Nanji and Liz Foster, both editors at sister publication Canadian Labour Reporter, will be lending their talents to the coverage of human resources as well. My role has also changed to acting publisher/editor-in-chief as publisher John Hobel remains on leave. We're excited about these changes, as we leverage the strength of Canada's strongest and largest team of journalists dedicated to covering the work- place beat to bring you the news, information and trends in a way no other outlet can. LONG LIVE THE QUEEN OTTAWA — At most offi ces, wall art is pretty inoff ensive, with soothing scenes of nature or posters featuring words of empowerment. But at the Foreign Aff airs building in Ottawa, a change of decor caused a stir recently when a large portrait of Queen Elizabeth 2 was replaced by two paintings by Quebec artist Alfred Pellan. e paintings, "Canada West" and "Canada East," had hung above the reception desk since 1973, according to CBC News, but were taken down and replaced by her highness when the Conservatives came to power four years ago. "Global Aff airs Canada is committed to showcasing Canada, our art and our culture in all of our facilities, whether at home here in Canada or abroad in our embassies, high commissions and consulates," said John Babcock,a spokesperson for Global Aff airs Canada. " ese brightly coloured paintings... depict some of the best of Canada and are an excellent way to welcome Canadians and guests to Global Aff airs Canada." e art re-installation was noticed by workers, judging by one tweet: "Noth- ing against Her Majesty, but nice to see the Pellans back in their former location at the Pearson building." Credit: Robyn Mackenzie/Shutterstock

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