RCMP and DND face workplace bullying and racism lawsuits in Federal Court

McPhee Barristers, Klein Lawyers representing plaintiffs in class actions in Federal Court roundup

RCMP and DND face workplace bullying and racism lawsuits in Federal Court

The federal court has been busy with lawsuits involving labour and employment, intellectual property, immigration, and aboriginal law in this week’s litigation roundup. The court also continued to hear multiple actions filed by various groups against Ontario’s state of emergency declaration.

Two members of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) commenced an action in negligence against the RCMP, alleging failure to provide a workplace free from bullying, harassment, and intimidation. The matter was certified as a class proceeding. A case management conference was conducted at the federal court this week, with Kim Spencer McPhee Barristers P.C. acting for the class representatives, Geoffrey Greenwood, and Todd Gray.

In a proposed class proceeding against the Crown, Klein Lawyers LLP acted for the representative plaintiffs, Karen Lightbody and Rama Narsing. The plaintiffs claimed that the Department of National Defence (DND) committed systemic racism against its employees. They challenged DND’s grievance structure which allegedly failed to provide the plaintiffs with adequate internal mechanism to report incidents of racism at the workplace. They further claimed that because of the institutional racism at the DND, they suffered serious infringement of their constitutional rights to equality, as well as serious physical and psychological damages, out-of-pocket expenses, and loss of income.

In suits involving intellectual property, the firms present in court this week include Blake Cassels & Graydon for Whitewater West Industries, Smart & Biggar for Proslide Technology Inc., Goodmans LLP for Google and Apotex Inc., Robic for Sonos Inc. and Montreal Gourmet Holdings, Norton Rose Fulbright for Janssen Inc., Aitken Klee LLP for Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd. and Pharmascience Inc.

Stikeman Elliott LLP represented Libra Voyage Ltd. in an admiralty suit which stemmed from a 2018 collision incident. Two barges were tied together, adrift, and were not under command when they collided with a dock, a restaurant and docked pleasure crafts at Coal Harbour, BC.

An application for judicial review pursuant to aboriginal law was filed by Chief Joe Alphonse on behalf of the Tl'etinqox Government against the Crown. The tribe was represented by JFK Law Corporation.

Gilbert McGloan Gillis acted for Mogens Givskud Co. Ltd. in a tort lawsuit against the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

Under immigration and refugee law, the firms in court include Olalere Law Office, Jared Will & Associates, Clivio Law Professional Corp., Bertrand Deslauriers, Community Legal Services, Waldman & Associates, Mangat Law Professional Corp., Kaminker & Associates, Bellissimo Law Group, Mamann, and Sandaluk & Kingwell.

This week, the federal court also continued to hear multiple actions filed by various groups concerning the legality of Ontario’s state of emergency declaration in February, which was issued in response to growing protests against the province’s COVID-19 public health measures.  In these lawsuits, Johnstone & Cowling LLP has been acting for Canadian Frontline Nurses, Henein Hutchison LLP for Canadian Civil Liberties Association, Sujit Choudhry for Canadian Constitution Foundation, and Foster LLP for Jeremiah Jost and several other individual plaintiffs.

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