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166-2-30615 (2001 PSSRB 100)
Pieters v. Treasury Board (Federal Court of Canada)
Before: Y. Tarte
Appearances: Pieters, for the Grievor; K. Hucal, for the Employer
Decision rendered: October 2, 2001
Jurisdiction – Failure to renew term contract – Whether disguised disciplinary action – Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (Charter) – the grievor accepted a term appointment as a Registry Officer, PM-1, with the Federal Court of Canada – he was employed for the duration of the term but his appointment was not renewed – his grievance against the non-renewal of his appointment was denied by the employer at all levels of the grievance procedure – the grievor's bargaining agent advised him that an adjudicator appointed under the Public Service Staff Relations Act (PSSRA) had no jurisdiction to hear and determine his grievance – accordingly, the grievor launched an action in the Federal Court of Canada against Her Majesty the Queen, alleging for the first time that he had been treated in a discriminatory manner, contrary to the Charter, because he was an African Canadian male: Pieters v. Canada (Federal Court, Trial Division file T-817-00) – McKeown J. dismissed his claim on the ground that any remedy which the grievor might have must be found in the provisions of the PSSRA: 2001 FCT 496 – therefore, the grievor referred his grievance to adjudication – the Board raised the issue of the jurisdiction of an adjudicator appointed under the PSSRA to hear and determine a grievance against the non-renewal of a term contract – the grievor claimed that an adjudicator would have jurisdiction to hear and determine a grievance against the employer's failure to renew his term appointment, provided that he could establish that the employer acted in bad faith – the Chairperson determined that the employer's failure to renew the grievor's term contract was not a termination of employment within the meaning of subparagraph 92(1)(b)(ii) of the PSSRA, as no action was required on the employer's part – rather, the grievor's employment came to an end by virtue of his contract of employment and section 25 of the Public Service Employment Act – furthermore, the fact that the grievor was now raising certain allegations relating to the employer's violation of the Charter did not operate to give an adjudicator jurisdiction over a matter where the adjudicator did not already have that jurisdiction – therefore, the Chairperson concluded that the grievor's grievance could not be referred to adjudication under subsection 92(1) of the PSSRA – the employer's reply at the final level of the grievance process was by virtue of subsection 96(3) "final and binding for all purposes of the Act and no further action under this Act may be taken thereon" – it was during the grievance process that the grievor should have raised his allegations of the employer's Charter violations – if he was unhappy with the employer's reply at the final level of the grievance process, it would then be open to him to apply for judicial review of that reply – no jurisdiction.
|Cases cited:||Pieters v. Canada, 2001 FCT 496; Dansereau v. National Film Board,  1 F.C. 100; Eskasoni School Board/Eskasoni Band Council v. MacIsaac (Federal Court of Appeal file A-643-85, April 24, 1986); Hanna (166-2-26983); Blackman (166-2-27139); Beaulieu (166-2-27313); Lecompte (166-2-28452); Marta, 2001 PSSRB 1 (166-2-29643); Laird (166-2-19981); Weber v. Ontario Hydro,  2 S.C.R. 929; Johnson-Paquette v. Canada (Federal Court of Appeal file A-729-98, April 7, 2000).|