Insubordination or representation?

Shop steward got into argument with manager over allegations against co-workers
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 11/27/2013

This instalment of you make the call features a shop steward who was suspended after a heated argument with management.

Laurie Ostrowsky was a journeyperson millwright and industrial mechanic at the Saskatoon, Sask., Wastewater Treatment Plant. A city employee since 1996, Ostrowsky was a shop steward for the union for six years.

In March 2010, the plant maintenance manager became aware of a rumour that employees planned to not co-operate with a new foreman. One morning, the maintenance department held a toolbox meeting to discuss the duties of the day. The manager came into the meeting unannounced and said he was there to investigate the rumour regarding the new foreman. He stated he wasn’t “finger pointing” but wanted to avoid a negative environment.