“Could that Happen to Me?”
Marlie and Johanna were cooling down after their weekly game of hockey at the local rink. While several of their team members had already left for the pub, the two millennials struck up a conversation about their lives since the last game held earlier that month.
“You’ll never guess what happened to one of my co-workers earlier this week,” said Johanna.”I bet I can top whatever that was with my own story,” countered Marlie. “But you go first.” “Well, one of my co-workers, who has worked at the shop for four years, was called to the manager’s office just before the end of the shift on Friday.” Johanna went on to say that her colleague returned from the meeting and it was evident she had been crying. “She said she had just been told that her job was over and not to report for work next week!” exclaimed Johanna.”And there was no mention of why this decision was made or any details about her pay or benefits. Imagine!”
Marlie finished loading her hockey equipment into her bag. She looked up at Johanna and said, “That’s nothing! Since our last game, my supervisor was told by the company’s HR office that he was no longer going to be part of the department’s management team. They informed him that he would be returning to his former Tech III job along with a cut in pay. They said this change would start as of the next pay period.” Johanna shook her head as she turned to her friend. “I seem to remember something from one of my business courses at college that makes it sound like both your boss and my friend have been given a raw deal. I think these people have more rights under the law. Don’t they?” Marlie said there were others at her shop who were feeling discouraged about a number of things like the lack of affordable benefits, a sense of fairness in getting internal job openings and a recent series of workplace injuries that had not been addressed.
They both left the rink on the way to join their team mates. Marlie and Johanna walked the five blocks to the pub in silence, both feeling somewhat vulnerable by the stories they had just shared. They each thought silently, “Could that happen to me?”
1. What are some legal questions that would need to be answered regarding the changes in the terms and conditions of work for Johanna’s and Marlie’s work colleagues?
2. After looking at the website for employment standards in your province, state the amount of reasonable notice that is required in the situation described by Marlie in this case. What information is needed to determine your answer here?
3. Johanna’s manager may get legal advice to file a claim against his employer. Describe what this action is called and what would this individual be seeking in light of his announced job change.