Dollars and Scents: Do Employers Have an Obligation to Provide a Scent-Free Workplace?
May 26, 2010
In a recent U.S. decision, the City of Detroit paid a significant damages award to a former employee with a chemical sensitivity. Given some of the recent trends in the jurisprudence, it is possible that a similar decision, or a law that specifically prohibits workplace scents, is not far off in Canada. Employers can be proactive by implementing a workplace scent policy, and employing some routine avoidance measures. In doing so, employers may be able to avoid a complaint to the Ministry of Labour alleging a breach of the Occupational Health and Safety Act or the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario, alleging discrimination on the basis of disability. (2010) Employment and Labour Law Reporter 20:2 at 18.