Hi everyone! Thanks for joining us today to talk about a serious topic: Bullying in the workplace. It's a difficult issue and has sparked a number of questions from our readers. Let's get started.
by Gillian Livingston 8/9/2012 4:03:33 PM
Here's a question from Darryl that came to our email box:
by Gillian Livingston 8/9/2012 4:03:58 PM
This is a very difficult question - bullying in the workplace.
Have we been too permissive about workplace bullying generally in Canadian society?
On what basis do courts judge bullying? Why must it be severe before courts award a judgement?
by Gillian Livingston 8/9/2012 4:04:02 PM
Hello! I’m Gillian Livingston, the Careers Web Editor at The Globe and Mail. I’ll be moderating our online discussion.
We’ll be starting our online chat with Daniel Lublin, a workplace law expert and a partner at Whitten & Lublin, at noon. He’s column on this topic can be found here: Is your boss just tough, or a bully? www.theglobeandmail.com
Feel free to send in questions now via the grey box below.
If you can’t take part in the online chat, you can send questions now to email@example.com and we’ll try to get Daniel to answer them during the chat and you can read the response in the transcript that will be posted.
by Gillian Livingston 8/9/2012 4:04:42 PM
Have we been too permissive about workplace bullying in Canada? Do other countries handle it any better?
by Gillian Livingston 8/9/2012 4:07:18 PM
Darryl also asks: Aren't workplace bullies playing out childhood abuse dramas from childhood? Aren't we indulging them by not recognizing it, and saying they have the authority to abuse adults in the workplace (by having weak penalties for the abusers)?
by Gillian Livingston 8/9/2012 4:09:13 PM
A question from Candice from e-mail asking if this situation described would be considered abuse. About a month before I was terminated from my job of 16 years in September 2010, my female supervisor, who handled HR, became physically aggressive toward me during a meeting. I was taking notes because I was being accused of lying and I wanted to make sure I was accurately recording what was happening. I wasn’t lying. The situation was a set-up by my supervisor and the other person in the room to get something on me so she could “disguise” the real reasons I was being fired -- a recent diagnosis of type 2 diabetes following thyroid cancer earlier that year. My supervisor got up out of her chair, reached across the table and grabbed my pen and pad of paper out of my hand, yelled at me that I wasn’t listening and threatened to fire me. She didn’t touch my skin, but I’m wondering if the police would have considered this an assault and, if so, could I have her charged almost two years later? My supervisor had told me several years before this incident that the previous HR person, a woman, had slapped another woman across the face and the victim was paid off and terminated. The HR woman kept her job. Ironically, I got the victim’s job!
I am still unemployed, on EI, and trying to find a job, but it isn’t easy at age 58. I feel that I have PTSD because I’m very nervous about what will happen at my next job.
by Gillian Livingston 8/9/2012 4:15:01 PM