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Failure to Wear Safety Glasses & Verbal Abuse of Supervisor Justified Firing

An industrial cleaner wasn’t wearing her safety glasses as required. When a supervisor told her to put them on, she verbally abused him using profanity in front of other workers. So the employer fired her. The union filed a grievance on her behalf. The arbitrator said the employer had a clear policy on wearing proper eye protection and the cleaner had attended three safety talks on this policy. She’d also been warned earlier by a supervisor and a union steward about not wearing safety glasses. And considering the cleaner’s ‘checkered disciplinary record’ and unprofessional conduct, termination was warranted, concluded the arbitrator [Robinson Solutions (Oshawa) Inc. v. Teamsters Local Unino 938 (Bircham Grievance), [2014] O.L.A.A. No. 334, Sept. 2, 2014].