In the recent Alberta case of Turner v Atco Frontec Corp the court held that an employee’s hot temper culminating in inappropriate and aggressive behavior towards another employee might provide adequate just cause for dismissal. The deterioration of the relationship between the employee and the rest of the team was found to be, in and of itself, an adequate ground of dismissal, independent of any finding of harassment towards other employees.
In this case, Mr. Turner alleged wrongful dismissal after he was terminated due to coming into conflict with another member of the employer’s team. The employee had a history of previous aggressive behavior and was well known in the firm for his hot temper and personality. After coming into conflict with another employee, Mr. Turner threatened her, failed to apologize and continued to behave aggressively during a meeting with his superiors who attempted to resolve the situation.
Despite finding that Mr. Turner did not actually harass the other employee, the court found that just cause existed for the employee’s dismissal, due to his unwillingness to resolve the problem and inability to work with other members of the team. If fully embraced by Alberta courts, the principal from this case would allow employers more flexibility to terminate employees who act inappropriately or aggressively towards other members of the team, even if their conduct does not rise to the formal level of abuse or harassment under appropriate law.
If you believe that you have not been treated fairly by your employer, do not face your struggle alone. De Bousquet PC has a proven track record of fighting for the rights of employees and we will help you obtain the best results in your case.