Concerns over conflict of interest leads to discrimination complaint

Canada Post denied worker’s application to leadership program because spouse was superintendent; was adverse treatment based on marital status
By Jeffrey R. Smith
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 10/11/2017

A Canada Post employee who was denied participation in a leadership development program because of conflict-of-interest concerns with her superintendent husband was discriminated against based on marital status, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal has ruled.

Jessica Stanger was hired by Canada Post in Calgary in 1989. Two years later, she transferred to Victoria to work as a postal clerk there. In 1999, she suffered an injury outside of work that resulted in two bulging discs in her neck. Because of this injury, Canada Post deemed Stanger to be “permanently, partly disabled” (PPD) employee.

Stanger’s PPD status involved restrictions that limited how much she could lift and carry, and limited standing for a maximum of two hours. Canada Post placed her in a graduated return-to-work program from 2002 to 2004, after which she was assigned to the Communication A section in Victoria.