WCB eligibility for federal workers subject to provincial rules: Supreme Court

Parks Canada employee unsuccessfully challenges denial of workers’ compensation claim under Alberta policy
By Jeffrey R. Smith
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 04/30/2014

Canada’s top court has upheld an Alberta Workers’ Compensation decision that a federal government worker is not entitled to compensation for chronic onset stress.

Douglas Martin was hired as a park warden for Parks Canada in 1973. In 2000, he launched a health and safety complaint arguing wardens should be armed when carrying out law enforcement duties. Martin and Parks Canada went through several internal complaint processes, which led to court proceedings and appeals. Because of his position at the head of the complaint, Martin felt he suffered professionally because of a loss of work and training, as well as promotion opportunities.

In June 2006, Parks Canada told Martin to disclose information on his work computer in relation to an access to information request. Six months later, Martin was warned that he hadn’t responded sufficiently to the instructions and if he didn’t provide a proper response, he would be disciplined. However, the due date for compliance was five days before Martin actually received the letter demanding compliance.