Fired employee drank too much, came to work too little

Discipline didn’t seem to change employee’s ways and he refused assistance through employer’s EAP
By Jeffrey R. Smith
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 04/26/2012

Making bad choices not a disability

When it comes to an employee with a drinking problem there can be a fine line between someone with alcoholism — a disability requiring accommodation — and someone who just makes bad decisions in his life. An employee of the Royal Canadian Mint in Winnipeg discovered that living one’s life a certain way that resulted in numerous problems with attendance at work is not necessarily a sign of illness that the employer should have recognized — especially when the employee refused assistance offered by the employer on multiple occasions.

An arbitrator has upheld the dismissal of a troubled Royal Canadian Mint employee who missed a mediation regarding his harassment complaint — the latest in a string of absences —against a manager and his excuse rang a little hollow.