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A few years ago, I fired someone on the spot, for stealing and drunkenness
at work. Shortly after I got a call as a reference. I was asked for the
reason that I let her go and answered truthfully. A couple of days later I
received a phone call from Labour Standards (a govt organization). I was
fined and severely reprimanded.
Not sure if it is true, but seems that this should cut both ways. An
interview question is a public statement. *Anything* negative leaves the
person open to nasty legal issues. IT or any other industry, yesterday,
today, or tomorrow does not change the legal issues, which is way beyond
ethics or professional conduct.
A year ago I had a person here working on a co-op program. About a month
after the time was over, that person showed up and demanded that I was
obligated to hire them. I had to get the police to remove the person after
the death threats started. That person took me to Labour Standards
requesting a monetary settlement equal to 3 months salary. When I got the
telephone call, the clerk was very sympathetic to my situation and warned
me not to say anything negative without an affidavit of a witness to the
threats. The police did not count because they did not witness the threats.
Fortunately, the person was so out of it with anger that they did not
notice that there were three other people in the room, so affidavits were
not an issue. I won, but was given a real "run for my money".
Again, it seems to me that negative comments should cut both ways. This is
not a two way street but a situation, not much different from a divorce,
that whoever initiates the action has the upper hand. Making a negative
statement about someone in a public forum leaves anyone open to defamation
of character and/or slander, even if it is true.
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