News editor refused leave of absence to teach at college

Employee wanted to take a year to teach at local college
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 10/31/2012

An Ontario employee was not entitled to a leave of absence under his collective agreement because it didn’t provide sufficient professional development to justify it, an arbitrator has ruled.

Nevil Hunt was a news editor for two Ottawa-area newspapers owned by the Metroland Media Group. Hunt and other Metroland employees were eligible under the collective agreement to apply for an unpaid leave of absence of up to one year for professional or educational reasons, as long as the leave was “for good and sufficient cause” and didn’t interfere with the “efficient operation of the newspaper.”

Since the fall of 2008, Hunt — who joined Metroland in 2002 — was a part-time instructor at a local college. He arranged his teaching schedule around his work hours, and Metroland was fine with the arrangement.