Bullying In The Workplace Ontarioachkarlaw-admin
Workplace bullying in Ontario, a province known for its diverse and inclusive work environment, is a pressing issue that demands our attention. While Ontario workplaces have made significant strides in fostering a culture of respect and fairness in the workplace, instances of bullying still persist, affecting employees across various industries.
In this article, we will delve into the concept of workplace bullying, its manifestations, and the legal framework in Ontario designed to address and prevent this detrimental behavior. Join us on this exploration of an important issue that impacts the well-being of workers throughout the province.
What is Workplace Bullying in Ontario?
Employers in Ontario have a duty under the Occupational Health and Safety Act to maintain a safe working environment for their employees, which includes workplace bullying and harassment. Workplace bullying can typically be described as acts or verbal comments that have the potential of psychologically hurting or isolating an employee in the workplace. The comments, acts, or behaviour, typically intend to offend, degrade, intimidate, or humiliate an individual or group of people. While bullying usually happens where there is a pattern of such behaviour, it could also be one incident that is sufficient in establishing workplace bullying, particularly where the one incident has a lasting effect on the individual.
Although this type of behaviour is not always easily identified by employers, employers nonetheless must be diligent when it comes to managing bullying within their workplace.
Some examples of the behaviour that would constitute workplace bullying in Ontario includes:
- Excluding or isolating someone socially
- Establishing impossible deadlines which will set up the individual to fail
- Withholding important information or providing false information for the individual to be misinformed
- Making jokes that are offensive, either in person or electronically
- Undermining a person’s work
- Persistently criticizing a person
- Belittling a person’s opinion
These are just several examples of what may constitute as workplace bullying in Ontario. There are many other instances in which an employee may be found to have been bullied. If you are unsure whether a particular behaviour may constitute as workplace bullying, be sure to contact an employment lawyer who would be able to assist you in making that determination.
What is not considered Workplace Bullying?
There may be times where workplace activities, changes, or comments, would not typically amount to workplace bullying. Some examples of what usually would not amount to workplace bullying includes:
- Disciplinary actions which are based on valid concerns
- Implementing health and safety measures
- Expressing differences of opinion
- Valid criticism
- Offering constructive feedback, guidance, or advice about work related content or behaviour
What if an Employee Quits due to Workplace Bullying?
If an employee resigns due to bullying in the workplace, they may have a claim for constructive dismissal, as well as discrimination. When an employee resigns, they typically are not eligible for employment insurance (EI) benefits due to the fact that they voluntarily left their job. However, if constructive dismissal is established because of bullying, employees would then be eligible for EI benefits, where it is found that they were forced to resign.
A constructive dismissal claim following workplace bullying in Ontario typically stems from the fact that the employee resigned involuntarily, meaning they did not intend to resign on their own, and that something has “pushed” them to resign. Employees should ensure that any bullying acts or behaviour is reported to their employer, and that the behaviour is documented and addressed. If the employer fails to investigate or rectify the bullying behaviour, the employee may have a claim for constructive dismissal should they feel the need to resign.
Contact Achkar Law
Stand up against workplace bullying with Achkar Law by your side. Our team is dedicated to putting an end to the torment you may be facing. If you’re experiencing bullying at work, you don’t have to endure it alone. Reach out to Achkar Law for experienced guidance and support. We believe everyone deserves a respectful and nurturing work environment, free from harassment. Take the first step towards a positive change – contact us today. Let us help you assert your rights and create a workplace culture that values dignity and fairness. Don’t tolerate bullying; let Achkar Law empower you to reclaim control over your professional life.