No chances after last chance agreement

Machine malfunction after employee left unqualified co-worker in charge caused plant shutdown
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 10/03/2012

This instalment of You Make the Call involves a worker who made a misstep while on a last chance agreement.

The employer, Evraz NA, was a steel manufacturer in Regina, Sask. The employee was an ID operator at a continuous production mill that made spiral steel pipes. An ID operator was responsible for monitoring the welds of the seams and the gap control as each pipe was made. Because it was a continuous process, the ID operator was required to be at his stations at all times during the process, unless someone else with sufficient competency was available to take over the job functions. This requirement was in Evraz’s written policy.

In June 2010, the employee was suspended for five days for insubordination. A month later, he was given another suspension, this one indefinite, for further insubordination. Evraz considered the second suspension progressive discipline and a step up from the earlier suspension.