Public sector employers can’t arbitrarily decide what is workplace violence: Court

They have obligation to investigate using impartial, competent individuals
By Liz Foster
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 02/05/2016

When it comes to workplace violence, public sector employers don’t have the right to arbitrarily decide what constitutes such violence — they have an obligation to investigate using an impartial, competent person, according to the Federal Court of Appeal.

“Absent a situation where it is plain and obvious that the allegations fall outside the scope of the definition of workplace violence, the employer must appoint a ‘competent person’ to investigate when the matter cannot be resolved with the employee,” said Justice Yves de Montigny in his decision.