Employee’s miscarriage a disability: Tribunal

Ontario Human Rights Code doesn't require disability to be permanent
|Canadian Labour Reporter|Last Updated: 05/30/2016

An Ontario employee’s miscarriage was a disability that may require accommodation by her employer, the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal has ruled.

Winnie Mou of Markham, Ont., suffered a deep tissue injury in January 2013 that required heavy pain medication. She had difficulty moving one side of her body, so attempts to return to work were initially unsuccessful. Her employer, MHPM Project Leaders, wasn’t able to provide short-term disability benefits so she took sick days until she was able to return on Jan. 21.

In May 2013, Mou suffered a miscarriage, followed by the death of her mother-in-law shortly thereafter. These two events led to severe depression, which disabled Mou and required her to take time off work. Because she had used up her sick days in January, Mou had to use vacation leave.