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Can my employer ask me where my spouse's future work is located before hiring?

Discussion in 'Canadian Labour Legislation' started by SS.Kingston, Jan 22, 2014.

  1. Is there any human right code/employment equity regulations that list the questions not to be asked by an employer before hiring?

    Here is my situation:

    I had been working for the same company for 3 years prior to the expiry of my work permit. I tried to renew the permit, however it was refused because the LMO was sent in late. I had to stop working last year. But I was able to fight to get a job offer before I left (for them to hire me back once I secure the work permit). The only condition on the job offer is the possession of the permit. And the job offer was signed by both parties. I was recently told by CIC that the permit has been approved and mailed, and I should be expecting it in the next few days.

    I called our branch manager and asked him of the procedure to return to work. His first question to me was, "I would like to have a converstation with you first. I would like to know where your husband's future work is. And I hope you would appreciate from our business perspective that we don't want to see you leaving in the next few months when your husband finds work in other cities." As for my husband, he's on the yearly contract with the government, and not promised of future employment.

    My question is, is this something illegal/unethical for my employer to ask? Since both parties have already signed the job offer, doesn't it mean that I can return to work immediately after securing the work permit?

    Any insight would be greatly appreciated!
     
  2. It is understandable for the employer to ask that but inappropriate, see http://www.virtualadvisor.ca/home?action=viewQuestion&question_id=216

    As for your status at the company, that is a legal issue. However, you may not want to force your employer to hire you through courts even if you could because it would cause a bad workplace environment and you know if an employer wants you out, they will always find a way.

    What I would advise in this situation is to tell them that your husband has a good job and that you have no intentions of moving. You do not have to mention that he is on a yearly contract. That is not their business anyway.

    If it later turns out that your intentions change, maybe it's not even your husband that finds a new job but yourself, then so be it. That's tough luck for the employer but it is something they have to live with. No employer can expect staff to stay forever.
     

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