Worker’s work refusal escalates

Suspension for refusing assigned work leads to altercation and dismissal for breach of company's violence and harassment policy
By Jeffrey R. Smith
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 04/29/2015

When people get into frustrating and emotional situations, it can be easy for things to escalate if the frustration continues. But escalation often means more trouble. This is especially true for employees who are having problems at work.

An employee having a disagreement with management can get into trouble if his behaviour crosses the line into insubordination – that can lead to disciplinary action by the employer. But once the discipline is issued, if the employee persists or escalates things, it can make things worse – especially if behaviour that started as insubordination becomes threatening. And when workplace violence and threats enter into the equation, things can get a lot worse for the employee than discipline. Sometimes it’s better to just quit while you’re ahead, or a suspension can turn into termination.