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    Pamela Muir: Youth Group Home Workers in Whitehorse No Longer Have to Work Alone

    Photo Courtesy of Yukon Employees Union

    The Yukon Employees Union says the decision by the commissioner will improve safety for workers in Whitehorse youth group homes.

    The Yukon Employees Union has won a case that previously required  many youth group home workers in Whitehorse to work alone on their shifts.

    The Yukon Employees Union president Steve Geick says the union filed a policy grievance with its workers against the requirement over a year ago and that he's  pleased with the recent decision made by Public Service Commissioner Pamela Muir last month.

    "We filed a policy grievance in January of 2018. It was finally heard in November and the decision came out in December that under the under the Occupational Health and Safety Act,under the General Administration Manual and the collective agreement that speaks to health and safety, that the employer wasn't making every reasonable effort to ensure that people weren't working alone."

    Moving forward, an employer will have to call a complete employee roster to ensure workers in group homes aren't working alone if they feel unsafe.

    Geick says the recent  Muir Report confirmed the unions beliefs about the matter.  

    "The independent study that I believe was done in 2017, the Muir Report, confirmed our thoughts that no one should work alone in the group homes. It's not only unsafe, but it also impacts the programming that can be done with the youth."

    There are various types of policy grievances available to employees in the Yukon and Geick says the new protocols for youth group home workers will be enacted immediately.

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