Employer pulls plug on inappropriate emails

Emails were contrary to policy and breached employer's trust
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 04/01/2015

A Manitoba government employee irreparably damaged the employment relationship with inappropriate computer use at work for two years, an arbitrator has ruled.

The 54-year-old employee, referred to as K.S. in the decision, was a “designated officer” working as a court clerk in the maintenance enforcement program for the province of Manitoba. He worked for the province for 30 years with no performance problems. His only discipline came in 1997 when he suspended for seven days for placing “sexist, profane, vulgar, and in short highly objectionable” material on his government computer from correspondence between himself and others outside of the office. K.S. was told his computer was for work only and using it for personal matters was prohibited. K.S. admitted his misconduct and apologized. The province warned him similar conduct would be subject to discipline up to and including dismissal.