HOSPITAL DISCRIMINATES AGAINST DISABLED EMPLOYEES: ARBITRATOR Major win by Local 1623 in Sudbury will affect all employees in Hospitals of Ontario Disability Insurance Plan (HOODIP)
CUPE won an important decision for all health care employees covered by the Hospitals of Ontario Disability Income Program (“HOODIP”).
Under HOODIP, employees returning to work on accommodation or an approved modified work program, are not considered to be “actively at work”. Rather, these employees are deducted sick leave while working with accommodations.
CUPE, Local 1623, challenged the practice on the basis that excluding employees performing modified work as not being “actively at work” was inherently discriminatory and perpetuates the stereotype that work performed by employees with disabilities is not real or valuable.
Arbitrator Trachuk agreed with CUPE, and in her award, issued on February 21, 2017, confirmed that “treating an employee with a disability as being not “actively at work” when they are actually actively at work is prima facie discriminatory.” She added “it is discriminatory because that person is working but is being treated differently because their disability requires modifications for them to work.” The Arbitrator concluded that “[e]mployees on modified duties are entitled to be treated like other employees […] and not having to use up their sick benefits while working.”
CUPE, Local 1623, is a proud member of the Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (“OCHU”) and is proud to advance health care workers’ rights across the province.
What we do
The Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (OCHU) is the hospital wing of the Canadian Union of Public Employees. Our 34.000 members in 70 local unions at 120 facilities bargain a central collective agreeement with the Ontario Hospital Association and co-ordinate bargaining across the hospital and long term care sectors. OCHU is actively involved in patient and resident advocacy in many communities.