What it Means to be Identified as "Other Parties" in a Lay-off Complaint
The following is intended to help clarify what it means to be an "other party" in a lay-off complaint and answer frequently asked questions.
For each type of complaint that the PSLREB hears, certain persons, called "other parties", have a "right to be heard". In a lay-off complaint, the "other parties" include every other employee in the part of the organization where employees will be laid off. "Other parties" receive a copy of the complaint (and any attachments) and all related documentation that is filed as the complaint process unfolds.
In this way, "other parties" can:
- know what the case is about;
- respond to any motions that are filed (if they so wish); and
- decide whether they should participate in the hearing.
In some cases, the PSLREB's decision may have an impact on the other parties and so individuals may wish to make their views known to the PSLREB.
Frequently Asked Questions
"I received an email from the PSLREB. When I asked why they were forwarding me this information, I was told that I was an "other party" to a complaint. I don't understand why I am an "other party" and why I am getting this information."
- Someone has filed a lay-off complaint with the PSLREB and it is your right to receive this information and to be kept informed of what is happening. Some individuals, including yourself, have been identified as employees who are in the part of the organization where the lay-off will occur. This makes you an "other party" to the complaint.
- If the complainant is successful in their complaint, the PSLREB may order that the lay-off be set aside and may also order other corrective action. This may or may not have an impact on you. By receiving the information you will know what the complainant's allegations are and the position of the deputy head regarding those allegations. With that information, you may choose to file your own written submissions on the case. If you file written submissions, you then have a right to participate in the hearing. If you do not file written submissions, you may attend the hearing but you will not be allowed to question witnesses or make any oral submissions. It is up to you to decide what is best for you.
"I am not concerned about the outcome of this case and I don't want to receive any emails or documents. Is there anything I can do so the PSLREB stops sending me emails?"
- If after receiving the complaint document and any attachments, you have decided that you do not want to participate in the hearing and that you do not want to receive anything further regarding this case, you should prepare and sign the following statement, called a waiver, and fax it to the PSLREB at (613) 949-6551. You may also scan the signed waiver and send by email to email@example.com:
"I have been identified as an 'other party' in complaint number [add file number] and I have received a copy of the complaint with all the attachments. I am advising the PSLREB that I do not wish to receive any correspondence from the PSLREB or anyone else regarding this complaint. I understand that by making this choice, I will not be able to participate in the hearing, other than attending the proceedings. I would ask that the PSLREB respect my decision not to participate in the case and that my name be removed from the mailing list in this file."
- Once the PSLREB has received your signed waiver, your name will be removed from the mailing list and you will no longer be copied on any of the emails in this case.
"As an 'other party' to the complaint, I want to receive the documents but I don't understand why the PSLREB is forwarding personal or confidential information to everyone. Shouldn't the PSLREB be removing the personal and confidential information before forwarding the documents to the other parties?"
- The PSLREB's complaint form clearly states that complainants should not include personal or medical information with their complaint. However, the PSLREB occasionally receives complaints that include information of that nature.
- The PSLREB is obliged to forward the documents it receives. Unlike departments, the PSLREB cannot remove confidential information from documents it receives before forwarding them. In fact, section 14 of the PSLREB's Regulations requires that the complaint and all the supporting documents be forwarded to the Deputy Head AND all the other parties to the complaint. The PSLREB cannot simply decide to withhold certain documents and forward others. The PSLREB is obliged to forward documents even when the complainant has marked them "confidential".
"I want to receive the information but I don't want the PSLREB to disclose my personal email address to anyone. What should I do?"
- Since it began its operations in 2006, the PSLREB has adopted email as its principal means of communicating with parties. Generally, individuals involved in complaints before the PSLREB have a business (government) email address that can be used. Where a person does not have a business email, we ask that an email that can be disclosed to all the other parties be provided. If you do not wish to provide your personal email address, you should create another email address on Gmail or Yahoo or other provider that will be used for the purposes of the complaint. You may also provide us with a mailing address.
- If you choose to receive the information by mail, it will be sent to you by regular mail which may take several days.
- If you DO NOT provide either an email address that can be disclosed or a mailing address, you will not be able to receive any information regarding the complaint.