Safety & HCM Post

Texting Indecent Photos to Supervisor = Just Cause to Fire Longstanding Employee

Should an employee with 30 years of service and a clean disciplinary record lose his job for texting photos of his genitals to a female supervisor? The union acknowledged that the employee went way over the line and deserved to be punished for violating the organization’s respectful workplace policy but argued that termination was too harsh. The Alberta arbitrator disagreed. The incident was extremely serious, especially considering the organization’s “highly male-dominated workforce”; rather than being an isolated incident, it was the culmination of a series of harassing texts that began as unwelcome flirtations and escalated to photos of men’s and, ultimately, the worker’s own genitals; and even though the employee apologized, he did so only after being told to and seemed more intent on blaming the victim than showing remorse. As a result, the organization had just cause to fire him immediately and without progressive discipline [Corporation of the City of Calgary v Canadian Union of Public Employees, Local 37, 2019 CanLII 51778 (AB GAA), May 30, 2019].

Bongarde Editorial

Bongarde Editorial

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