Employee wrongfully dismissed for sharing too much information

Worker emailed information on procurement process to consultants submitting proposals, but he had best interests of employer in mind
By Jeffrey R. Smith
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 05/15/2019

A federal Crown corporation wrongfully dismissed an employee whose sharing of too much information to consultants submitting proposals wasn’t appropriate but wasn’t serious enough to warrant termination, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice has ruled.

Donald Schultz, 61, was the director of real estate in Ottawa for the Canada Lands Company (CLC), a federal Crown corporation specializing in real estate, development, and attractions management. CLC initially hired Schultz in July 2012 for a project developing a former Canadian Forces Base in which he was responsible for all real estate activities for the project such as drafting the master plan, securing planning approvals, implementing marketing strategies, and implementing a public consultation process. As part of his role, Schultz communicated with consultants CLC had hired for input on the scope of the work for both the municipal planning contract and landscape design contract that were part of the project.

Initially, the project had a goal of being ready to sell to developers by the end of March 2017. However, CLC needed to secure revenue after another project was delayed, so it moved up the deadline to the end of March 2016, which worried Schultz as he felt everything would have to go exactly as planned to meet the new deadline.