Supreme Court of Canada On Pregnancy and Parental Leave Top-Ups

The Supreme Court of Canada recently upheld a decision of a British Columbia arbitrator which had found that denying birth mothers entitlement to parental supplemental employment (“SEB” or “top-up”) benefits where they had received pregnancy SEB plan benefits was discriminatory. The issue before the arbitrator turned on an interpretation of the collective agreement in place…

Supreme Court Expands “Freedom of Association” and Recognizes Right to Strike

In three decisions released in late January, 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada has once again revisited, and expanded, the reach of section 2(d) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (the “Charter“), which guarantees “freedom of association”. In two cases involving the RCMP, the Court held that the unique bargaining scheme imposed on…

Court Upholds Two-Year Limit on LOE Benefits for Workers Age 63 or Older

The Ontario Divisional Court’s recent decision upholding the two-year limitation on loss of earnings (“LOE”) benefits for workers age 63 and older should reassure employers that Ontario courts take notice that LOE benefits are not meant to be paid for life. Section 43(1)(c) of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act (“WSIA”) limits LOE entitlement for…

Paul Broad Quoted in Law Times

Hicks Morley’s Paul Broad was quoted in the October 6, 2014 edition of Law Times magazine in an article entitled “Labour lawyers watching as SCC pronounces on key employment law issues.” Among other things, Paul comments on the Saskatchewan Federation of Labour v. Saskatchewan decision, currently on reserve at the Supreme Court of Canada, which…

B.C. Court of Appeal Stays Decision Rendering Teachers’ Collective Bargaining Legislation Unconstitutional, Pending Appeal

In our blog post of February 18, 2014, “British Columbia Supreme Court Awards $2 Million in Damages for Freedom of Association Violation,” we reported that the B.C. Supreme Court declared Bill 22, legislation relating to teachers’ collective bargaining rights, unconstitutional. The Court concluded that this legislation was “essentially identical” to earlier legislation (Bill 28) that…

Finding of Charter violation leads to $2 million award against the B.C. government

In British Columbia Teachers’ Federation v. British Columbia, the B.C. Supreme Court awarded $2 million in damages against the B.C. Government for its violation of the freedom of association guarantee found in section 2(d) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (“Charter“). The British Columbia Teachers’ Federation (“BCTF”) successfully argued that legislation enacted by…

Privacy Rights vs. Union’s Duty to Represent its Membership: The Bernard Case Concludes

The Supreme Court of Canada dismissed the appeal in Bernard v. Canada (Attorney General), thus ending the “legal odyssey” of an employee who did not want her personal information disclosed to the unions which she declined to join during her years of employment with the federal government, but to which she was mandatorily obligated to…