The Crown Employees Grievance Settlement Board (GSB)
has ruled in favour of OPSEU in a key settlement on personal privacy
in the workplace.
OPSEU filed the grievance on the behalf of a health
and safety inspector with the Ministry of Labour, alleging that the
Government of Ontario had illegally obtained, disclosed and
disseminated private Canada Police Information Centre (CPIC)
employee records without the knowledge or consent of the employees.
OPSEU President, Warren (Smokey) Thomas responded to
the GSB victory saying “Enforcement officers are being betrayed by
the very people they work for. They’re told to go out and enforce
Provincial laws while their
bosses are going behind their backs to illegally
obtain private information about them.”
“Our members would be fired if they breached the
privacy act the way the government has done,” said Thomas.
This important decision sets out clear limits on the
right of the Ministry to share personal and private information.
There are 17 ministries in the Ontario Public
Service involved in enforcement activities.