Linesman Who Threatens Supervisor Gets Last Chance to Keep His Job

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A hydro linesman threatened to punch his supervisor in the face while receiving a negative performance review. The union acknowledged that the linesman had violated the plant’s workplace violence policy but contended that termination was too harsh. The arbitrator reluctantly agreed. Although violence is a serious issue, especially at “a profoundly safety-sensitive workplace. . . where lives are on the line every day,” the linesman sincerely apologized and accepted responsibility. So he should be reinstated on a last chance basis on the understanding that any act of workplace violence over the next 12 months would be grounds for immediate termination with no right to file a grievance [Energy + Inc. v Power Workers’ Union (CUPE Local 1000), 2017 CanLII 45560 (ON LA), July 16, 2017].