A nurse prepares a COVID-19 vaccine on September 29, 2021 in Southfield, Michigan.
A beneficiary attendant who had refused to be vaccinated against COVID-19 and who had been suspended without pay by her employer has just lost her case before the Tribunal. She alleged that this suspension was constructive dismissal.
The Administrative Labor Tribunal concluded that she had instead been suspended without pay and that her employer, a religious community, had clearly stated that she could resume her work. post when properly vaccinated.
The Quebec government had announced, in September 2021, that it was imposing vaccination on health care workers and that those who did not show proof of vaccination would be suspended without pay. However, fearing a staff shortage, he reversed his decision and opted instead to require these refractory workers to undergo regular screening tests.
But this employer did not harbor the same fear; it had therefore maintained the original vaccination requirement.
He had explained to the Court that he housed nuns who were on average 90 years old, sick, sometimes at the end of their life, with little autonomy. He had said he feared experiencing the situation experienced by some CHSLDs. As a precaution, he had decided not to authorize screening tests as a substitute for adequate vaccination.
The worker had therefore been suspended without pay for an indefinite period due to of his refusal to be vaccinated. And she had filed a complaint with the Administrative Labor Tribunal, alleging constructive dismissal.
In its decision, the Tribunal argues, however, that she knew the consequences of her decision and knew that she could return to her position as soon as she was adequately vaccinated or when the sanitary measures were lifted. /p>
In the particular circumstances of this case where the health of vulnerable elderly people as well as that of employees is at stake, and this, in the context of a global pandemic, the x27;Employer is justified in asking her to be adequately vaccinated and in suspending her without pay at the fixed deadline because of her choice not to be, ruled the Tribunal.
The Employer has respected employees' freedom of choice to accept or refuse COVID-19 vaccination. By acting in this way, he did not violate their right to respect for their integrity, set out in the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms and the Civil Code of Quebec, he added.