03 Jul What is involved in Workplace Investigation Training?
When harassment is known to have occurred in the workplace, a workplace investigation will be conducted. The Occupational Health and Safety Act outlines that employers bare a legal duty to investigate all harassment claims.
An employer will fulfill this duty by first starting to hire a neutral party with workplace investigation training that is eligible to perform this investigation. The investigator does not always have to be a lawyer, but someone with the proper qualifications. What does this training involve?
Lawyers can receive this qualification by completing a workplace investigation training program. The program teaches lawyers on the procedure of these investigations, because if not completed correctly, it can cause further legal implications or an ineligible investigation.
To provide an idea of what these programs may include, the Workplace Investigation Training & Certificate Program conducted by the Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA) offers a good example of what is involved in this learning experience.
This program includes courses that discuss the legal demands from the Occupational Health and Safety Act, Human Rights Code of Canada, and common law. Not only will students understand the corresponding legal demands, but also how to follow and perform these duties in a manner that is fair through learning the necessary investigative procedure. They will focus on the practical knowledge required to perform the role accurately, for example, learning how to conduct interviews, take notes, review relevant evidence, drafting proper legally respected reports etc.
It also explains how harassment can have a psychological impact on both those involved and uninvolved in the harassment claim. In these cases, psychological trauma could be present, and the program will teach students how to conduct interviews with those who have been on the receiving end of this trauma. Further, students will learn to identify different harassment styles and the duplicity that could occur throughout the investigation.
There will also be opportunity to learn how to conduct specific investigations, for example, investigating discriminatory harassment claims. This type of harassment would include discrimination on the basis of race, sex, gender, ethnicity etc.
This is just one of many programs offered. There are even more advanced courses, some led by law schools, that can enhance investigative knowledge on workplace harassment and discrimination.
Kathy Chittley-Young, the employer lawyer at KCY at LAW is qualified to perform workplace investigations, as she has completed a program certifying her to be hired for this role. If you are an employer who needs to fulfill their duty to investigate, please contact KCY at LAW by filling in an online consultation request or contact us by phone at 905-639-0999 to book your consultation today.