Newspaper article The Canadian Press

High Court Rules Quebec Legislature Guards Fired for Voyeurism Can Grieve

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

High Court Rules Quebec Legislature Guards Fired for Voyeurism Can Grieve

Article excerpt

Guards fired for voyeurism can grieve: SCOC

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OTTAWA - Three former security guards at the Quebec legislature who were fired after they were caught using a camera to spy on guests at a neighbouring hotel can grieve their dismissals, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled Friday.

The guards were dismissed in July 2012 by Speaker Jacques Chagnon after an investigation revealed a legislature surveillance camera was being used to peer into hotel rooms in search of intimate scenes.

When their union filed a grievance on their behalf, the Speaker objected that a labour tribunal has no jurisdiction because of his parliamentary privilege to manage employees.

Decisions went back and forth as the case moved through the courts, with the Quebec Court of Appeal ruling in the union's favour in 2017, saying the guards were entitled to due process.

In a 7-2 ruling, the Supreme Court has upheld that decision, saying the legislature cannot evade labour laws by invoking parliamentary privilege. The court, which refers to Chagnon as the legislature President, examined the type of work done by the legislature security guards, who are unarmed and provide support for special constables and police officers. …

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