Termination was not reprisal for safety issue

The company was able to show sufficient reasons to terminate probationary employee. Union was unable to show evidence of a reprisal.
By Mark Rogers
|Canadian Labour Reporter|Last Updated: 07/18/2011

Fired four months into his six-month probationary period, an installation worker was terminated soon after uncovering asbestos insulation during a retrofit. The union alleged that the worker was improperly discharged for raising health and safety concerns. The employer said it was entitled to dismiss an unsuitable worker during the probationary period.

Hired in May 2008, A.J. was put to work with eight other workers on project Firestop. Their job was to insulate a commercial building with fire retardant matting. The workers were told that if they encountered asbestos they were to stop work and notify their manager.

In September 2008, A.J. and his partner came across asbestos in the area where they had been assigned to work. They stopped work, notified their manager and were then reassigned to work in another area.