Dentons

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Professional engineer with ‘significant safety background’ who sent ‘abhorrent e-mails’ loses safety retaliation case

By Adrian Miedema

A professional engineer who engaged in an ‘over-the-top, aggressive’ argument with an established member of management has lost his safety retaliation case at the Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB). Although employees who raise safety issues are entitled to protection, they must do so respectfully, the OLRB stated.

The employee was hired as the company’s business operations manager. He had a strong health and safety background. One month after he started working, he joined the joint Health and Safety Committee. He got into a significant conflict with the company’s ‘national manager, occupational health and safety’, which included a heated e-mail exchange. In one e-mail, he wrote:

‘I have been beaten up, insulted and ripped apart over safety. Never in my 16-year manufacturing engineering career have I encountered such resistance on safety from any manager, never mind from a safety manager himself.’ …

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