Canadian HR Reporter

November 28, 2016

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.

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 0 of 23

PM40065782 RO9496 November 28, 2016 fi nancial well–being award winning learn more... mental wellness physical fi tness it's a lot more than discounts the original perks company TM the original perks company TM 1.866.383.6646 ext.202 20160913_hrReporter_earLug_oct1_001.indd 3 2016-11-10 3:03 PM INSIDE Wooing the whistleblowers It's easy to see the value of an internal program that identi es and mitigates a problem before it goes public Beer can incident How can employers better protect their brands? page 3 Financial wellness Roundtable looks at how to better help employees page 8 Vendors Guide A directory of top HR vendors and suppliers page 11 page 20 Credit: Thomas Peter (Reuters) Saskatchewan workers' psychological injuries presumed work-related But critics say changes may incite 'mischief ' around workers' compensation claims BY MARCEL VANDER WIER SASKATCHEWAN took the lead recently when it announced all forms of psychological injuries — for all workers — are now pre- sumed work-related in the prov- ince, following changes enacted to the Workers' Compensation Act. And while the change should benefi t more people fi ling work- ers' compensation claims, at least one lawyer has concerns about the fi nancial impact on employers. In theory, an offi ce worker could claim psychological injury after a harsh conversation from a man- ager, said Gordon Hamilton, an employment lawyer at McDougall Gauley in Saskatoon, Sask. " is is the old sore back scenar- io, times 10, that I think employers could be facing. e problem with the reverse onus, which is what the legislation has, (is) how do you rebut an employee claiming that they've encountered a trau- matic event at work, traumatic enough that it would justify for them to be entitled to workers' compensation?" Background Firefighters, police officers and paramedics in the province have "seen horrifi c things" that could result in psychological injury, said Saskatchewan Labour Minister Don Morgan. But this ruling ex- tends past emergency services personnel. "We've made it available to all employees, not just certain speci- fi ed ones," he said. "And we've in- cluded all psychological injuries, so in both of those categories, we are as far out as anyone else — or further." "Workers' comp in Saskatche- wan advised us that about half the claims that come for psychologi- cal injury were declined because it's hard to prove the nature of the injury and, secondly, and more im- portantly for the worker, the link to employment," said Morgan. "Now, the starting point is that they are covered." While other provinces have simi- lar legislation, Saskatchewan's is unique in that it covers all forms of psychological injury workers could experience on the job, he said. DEVIL > pg. 7 Why does workplace bullying keep happening? Recent incidents highlight importance of employee education, training, leadership BY JOHN DUJAY THIS past year has seen multiple high-profi le reports of workplace bullying and harassment in the media. ese include alleged bullying at the Calgary and Ottawa police ser- vices, accusations of harassment at the Vancouver School Board as well as workers at the Nunavut government, Toronto Star, CBC, RCMP and WestJet. Considering all the coverage — and newer legislation meant to stop such behaviour — why does this harmful practice still happen? Some experts believe there will always be persecutors in the workplace. "Bullying is a fact of life, un- fortunately. It's something that's going to happen no matter what we do, no matter what legislation the government will enact," said Daniel Chodos, partner at Whit- ten & Lublin in Toronto. "Bullying continues because we are human beings." ere is also greater recognition of the issue, according to Diane Mason, owner of consulting fi rm Proactive HR in Hamilton, Ont. " e general public are becom- ing more aware both through so- cial media and television and some high-profi le cases that bring it to the forefront," she said. "We as a society talk about it more." As provinces continue enacting new legislation — such as British Columbia, which implemented anti-bullying legislation in 2012 — people are much more aware of their human rights, according to BullyFreeBC spokesperson Robyn Durling in Vancouver. "People are just aware of PUT > pg. 21 'Precarious work' overstated: Employer group Says evidence-based workplace modernization needed in Ontario BY SARAH DOBSON THERE has been plenty of talk lately about the rise of contin- gent or "precarious work," with concerns many workers are being forced to take part-time, contract or self-employed work because of an uncertain economy and the changing workplace. But those concerns are over- stated, according to Keep On- tario Working (KOW), a group of employer groups in Ontario that recently submitted recommenda- tions to the special advisors of the provincial government's Changing Workplaces Review. e review is looking into updating the prov- ince's Employment Standards Act and Labour Relations Act. " is whole narrative of gov- ernment seeking to address pre- carity in work is one that I think, at the very least, has a lot of holes in it and it's very questionable," said Karl Baldauf, vice-president of policy and government rela- tions at the Ontario Chamber of Commerce. DATA > pg. 10 LEAVING EARLY Workers clean office windows in Tokyo. Hoping to jolt Japan's limp consumer spending, policymakers and business leaders are considering plans to let workers leave by 3 p.m. on the last Friday of each month ("Premium Fridays") to encourage more spending. But in a country where long working hours are the norm, there are doubts about whether companies would adopt the plan.

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Canadian HR Reporter - November 28, 2016