Turmel v.Treasury Board (Correctional Service of Canada)

2009 PSLRB 122

  • Before: Roger Beaulieu
  • Decision Rendered: 2009-10-05
  • Original Language: French

An application for judicial review before the Federal Court is pending (Court file: T-1833-09).

Subject terms:

Maternity-related reassignment or leave – Contact with inmates – Employee’s obligation to cooperate with accommodation measures

The grievor alleges that the employer violated article 45 of the collective agreement (maternity-related reassignment or leave) – as soon as her pregnancy was confirmed, she notified the employer, which found a reassignment for her – the certificate from her physician indicated that she was not to have contact with inmates – however, two inmate cleaners had access to two of her workplaces – in the weeks following the grievor’s reassignment, she had a number of incidents of contact with inmates – her physician placed her off work, indicating that the troubles with the pregnancy were precipitated by the difficulties experienced at work – the employer and the grievor discussed her reassignment, but no agreement was reached, and the employer notified her that she would be on leave without pay until she gave birth, equivalent to a 10-week period – the employer did not exercise its right to obtain an independent medical certificate and did not verify whether the contact ban was justified – thus, it could not substitute itself for the existing medical evidence and not apply the provisions of the collective agreement – the employer was obliged, to the extent possible, to modify the grievor’s duties or to reassign her, while respecting the conditions set out in her medical certificate – in the employer’s opinion, it was difficult to reassign the grievor so as to avoid the activities or conditions noted in the medical certificate – the frequency of contact between the grievor and the inmate cleaners entitled her to paid leave under clause 45.07 of the collective agreement – despite their good faith, the employer and the grievor were not successful in achieving the necessary accommodation – therefore, the employer must pay remuneration for 8 of the 10 weeks claimed.

Grievance allowed in part.