Duty of Fair Representation

Posted by Johannes Schenk on April 30th, 2006 — Posted in Labour Law

Employees and unions will often find themselves at loggerheads on whether to run a grievance through to arbitration. The union has a duty to look after its members and will evaluate a case to determine whether it should proceed. The union will often rely on a third party such as a lawyer to provide an opinion on the merit of the case. CUPE Local 561 v. B.C. Labour Relations Board et al, 2005 BCSC 1366, reviews a union’s resort to such an opinion and concludes that a union must be careful not to, and may not, delegate the decision on whether to run with the case.

It ‘s not often that the BC Courts review these matters and the comments in the case are worth reading on that basis alone.