Non-Govt. Person Must Investigate Govt. Employee’s Work Violence Complaint
A government employee complained that her relationship with her manager had gotten so toxic that she was too scared to continue working with him. The agency took the complaint seriously and brought in another department official to investigate. But the employee contended that he wasn’t objective since he also worked for the federal government and that only an outsider should do the investigation. The OHS tribunal agreed. The OHS Regs. (Sec. 20.9) require that a “competent,” i.e., impartial, person investigate a workplace violence complaint. Impartiality is partly determined by the parties’ perceptions and, in this case, the employee’s perception that a government employee couldn’t impartially investigate a government agency was neither unreasonable nor abusive [Employment and Social Development Canada v. Canada Employment and Immigration Union, Case No. 2017-05, Sept. 26, 2018].