Store Fired Clerk for Complaining of Harassment and Violence by Co-Workers

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A store clerk was verbally harassed by a co-worker, which she reported to her supervisor. The supervisor spoke to the co-worker but his behaviour didn’t change. At the end of a shift, the clerk was closing up when that co-worker, a second co-worker and two of their friends entered the store and started yelling, running at and threatening her—all while surrounding her. The harassers eventually left. The clerk reported the incident the next day to the company. She was told to stay home while it investigated. She asked for numerous updates over the next 10 days but never got any. Instead, the company fired her. She filed a reprisal complaint, which the Labour Relations Board upheld, finding that there was a clear violation of the OHS law. The clerk was threatened with physical assault in the workplace by two of her co-workers and their friends. She complained about the incident to various levels of the company. In short, she’d been subjected to a horrifying incident at work and the company did nothing about it—other than fire her. And the employees who participated in that incident still remained employed with the company. So the Board ordered the company to pay her more than $12,000 in lost wages and damages [Ashley Haran v. Continental Investissements Capital Inc. o/a Ecko Unltd. Canada, [2017] CanLII 14631 (ON LRB), March 14, 2017].