• 151 Spinnaker Way #5A, Toronto, ON L4K 4C3
  • legalassistant@watsonpalmerlaw.com


At Watson Palmer Labour Lawyers we recognize the importance of training and education for union officials, representatives and stewards. To that end, our firm offers educational seminars on matters of labour relations significance as well as training seminars in the proper presentation and preparation of cases.

Our most popular seminars include

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Art Of


All of life is a negotiation, and this skill is absolutely critical for union officers and representatives – whether for collective bargaining or day to day grievance resolution and even dealing with management and your bargaining unit members.

This program does a deep dive into the elements of effective negotiation so you can ask for what you want and get more of what you need and beyond through the power of persuasion.

Watson Palmer Labour Lawyers are recognized as master negotiators.  In fact, Cindy Watson founded the International Association Of Master Negotiators and is the creator of the renowned Art Of Negotiation and Power Of Persuasion programs. take advantage of our unique systems to elevate your negotiation skills and leverage your power in the workplace.

Basic Steward Training &

Advanced Steward Training

This program is designed to reduce your legal fees by molding your Union Stewards into efficient, organized, effective Union representatives. Stewards will leave this program with the ability to skillfully represent members during investigations (including but not limited to taking excellent notes and knowing which questions to ask), properly and effectively investigate an alleged breach of the collective agreement (including, but not limited to, the Occupational Health and Safety ActHuman Rights CodeEmployment Standards Act, etc.), draft succinct and compelling grievances, fully prepare a matter leading up to arbitration, and develop. sharp critical thinking skills. Not only does this program provide an amazing educational opportunity for Stewards who are new to their role, but our Advanced training builds on current skills to provide an exceptionally refined approach to Union representation.

Duty of

Fair Representation

Whether it’s you first or hundredth time receiving a notice of a Duty of Fair Representation Application, there is always that first moment of terror. Questions immediately run through your mind. Did you and your team do everything in your power to ensure that this applicant was fairly represented? Did you ensure that you communicated with the applicant sufficiently throughout the grievance procedure? Did you act in a manner that could be perceived as arbitrary, discriminatory or in bad faith?

This program provides an in-depth review of the Duty of Fair Representation providing Union members with clear understanding of the law with respect to application. This program will both prepare members and instill best practices to prevent an application against your Union, as well as how to act when faced with an application. These skills are more important than ever given the significant potential increasing liability to unions.

Social Media

In the Workplace

The near constant rise and development of technology presents new challenges and concerns in today’s workplace. From Employer monitoring of employee workstations to the complexity and increasing use of social media as evidence both at arbitration and in the courts, the role of privacy interests with respect to social media in this new technological landscape have never been timelier and more urgent. This is even more pressing as workplaces ship from the office to the home. As these lines blur, familiarity with the law can help protect your members.

This program provides an in-depth review of the impact of Social Media in the Workplace. We will review and examine the current jurisprudence with respect to the matter, the impact of legislation such as the Human Rights CodeOccupational Health and Safety Act, etc., as well as practical application of said law. PARTICIPANTS WILL COME AWAY WITH A CLEAR NEW PERSPECTIVE ON SOME KEY DO’S AND DON’TS IN TODAY’S TECHNOLOGICAL WORLD AND WORKPLACE.


Disability, and Accommodation

Absenteeism, disability and accommodation are all matters that are more likely than not to affect every worker at some point in his/her career. During the course of our careers, many of us will be personally impacted by disabling illness on either a temporary or permanent basis.

This program provides the Union with knowledge of the rights and obligations that come part and parcel with the issues of disability, absenteeism and accommodation. Particularly, we will discuss and analyze the impact of human rights legislation, the impact of privacy legislation, as well as preparing and proceeding to arbitration including but not limited to the evidentiary burden, proper note taking, and proper investigation skills.

Prepping for


Every Union, regardless of labour relations with your employer, needs to have a clear understanding of the complexities of litigation. This program aims to arm Union members with an arsenal necessary to prepare a compelling and logical case for arbitration. We will review and enhance the skills learned in Basic and Advance Steward training to ensure that your membership is prepared. Additionally, there is the option for a full day of mooting (“Mock Court”) providing an educational experience superior to attending arbitration. Participants will review mock grievance files, prepare and provide opening statements, engage in chief/cross examinations, and make closing remarks all in a court-like setting.

Occupational Health and

Safety and Violence in the Workplace

The Occupational Health and Safety Act (hereinafter “OHSA”) sets out the rights and duties of all parties in the workplace, as well as the procedures for dealing with workplace hazards and for enforcement as needed.

This program provides a detailed analysis of the legislation, including the individual, the Employer, and the Union’s legal obligations. Particularly we will review the right to refuse unsafe work, reprisals against workers, workers’ rights, and OHSA’s incorporation into the Collective Agreement.

On June 15th, 2010 Bill 168 became law. This Bill 168 provided new legislation to amend the Occupational Health and Safety Act (hereinafter “OHSA”). Particularly, it strengthened protection for workers from workplace violence and harassment.

This program also provides a detailed analysis into the implications of Bill 168 on the OHSA, the Union and Employer’s role with respect to investigating complaints, and Union representation rights during said investigations and beyond.

Note Taking & Record Keeping at Arbitration

Negotiations, and Disciplinary meetings

The importance of organized, detailed, accurate notes cannot be overstated. These notes are a critical tool for putting forth our best arguments at arbitration, crafting the best settlement at negotiations, and properly representing our members during disciplinary and investigatory meetings. Furthermore, notes need to be properly filed or they risk being overlooked.

This program provides a comprehensive review of note taking and record keeping tactics. We will discuss the how to engage in an investigation, how to ask the right questions while eliminating the redundant information, how to prepare for grievance and disciplinary meetings, as well as technology to assist you with this task. Furthermore, we will address and suggest changes to enhance your local Union’s personal filing system

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