Duty to Inquire Series | An Introduction

Aug 23, 2023

All Posts/ Duty to Inquire Series | An Introduction
Duty to Inquire Series | An Introduction

Welcome to our three-part series on an employer’s Duty to Inquire. Research for this series was done with the assistance of Andrew Nicholl, Associate, with Roper Grewell LLP. This series is for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice.

There is a crucial connection between problematic substance use in the construction industry and an employer’s human rights duty to inquire, specifically for provincially regulated employers in British Columbia.

Statistics from a survey conducted by the construction industry rehabilitation plan and WorkSafeBC have been making headlines – one in three construction workers surveyed reported facing issues related to substance use. This eye-opening data highlights the urgent need to address this crisis and foster a safe and supportive work environment.

In the pursuit of promoting workplace safety and employee well-being, the Tailgate Toolkit Supervisor Training has emerged as an essential resource. One aspect that has garnered significant attention is the duty to accommodate. Recognizing the moral obligation and urgency surrounding this topic, participants are eager to understand how they can contribute positively to the well-being of their workforce.

However, addressing mental health and substance challenges in the workplace is far from simple. For various complex reasons, many workers choose to remain silent about their struggles. Breaking down these barriers is a fundamental goal of the Tailgate Toolkit Project, fostering an open and supportive environment where employees feel safe discussing their challenges and seeking assistance without fear of judgment or discrimination.

Andrew Nicholl, Associate with Roper Greyell LLP, has been instrumental in shedding light on the duty to accommodate during the Supervisor Training sessions. He emphasizes that creating an inclusive atmosphere not only benefits the mental well-being of employees but also enhances workplace safety. By reducing the risk of employees performing tasks when not fit to do so, employers can minimize potential hazards.