Understanding and fulfilling management obligations to confront and address concerns arising from interpersonal conduct is one of today’s biggest workplace challenges. The common law and various statutes (including human rights and health and safety legislation) impose various requirements on employers to provide and promote a workplace that is free of harassment, violence and other forms of inappropriate or abusive behaviour.
In the course of adjudicating claims, courts and tribunals will examine the manner in which employees are treated in the workplace, review how management addresses conflict and complaints of improper treatment, and assess the cumulative impact of the work environment on the individual in order to fashion appropriate remedies and make awards. Where the work environment has become sufficiently “poisoned,” an employee may be entitled to compensation for the violation of statutory rights or for any emotional distress suffered and, in some situations, to damages from constructive or wrongful dismissal, among other possibilities.
We have experts who can advise you on addressing and resolving concerns as they are arise. We also employ experienced investigators who regularly lead investigations into allegations of harassment and other forms of workplace misconduct. In addition, we can help employers to develop effective policies and procedures that can function to limit an employer’s liability in the event that such misconduct occurs.