Former government employee sues after losing his job

A former high-ranking official with the Yukon Housing Corporation is suing for wrongful termination.

A former high-ranking official with the Yukon Housing Corporation is suing for wrongful termination.

Marc Perreault, who worked for the corporation for 12 years, including as acting vice president, filed the lawsuit this week in Yukon Supreme Court.

Perreault, 49, was working as program director when he received notice of being laid off in September 2013.

“Prior to receiving the notice of lay-off, the Yukon Housing Corporation had systematically removed the plaintiff’s job responsibilities and subjected him to unreasonable demands and harassing conduct in the workplace, to the extent that the plaintiff took three weeks of sick leave in August 2013,” the court documents say.

Perreault does not provide any specific examples of this type of treatment in the short statement of claim he filed.

The government has not filed its statement of defence yet.

“Upon returning from sick leave and without prior notice or warning, the plaintiff was given the notice of lay-off on Sept. 11, 2013,” the lawsuit says.

Perreault claims he was laid off without cause or the appropriate notice.

“The dismissal by the defendants without just cause and without reasonable notice constituted an arbitrary and willful breach of the plaintiff’s contract of employment with the defendants and a wrongful dismissal of the plaintiff.”

Perreault says that while he was working for the housing corporation he was a valued and reliable employee.

He was the public spokesperson for the department on a number of occasions. In 2012 Perreault, who is also a certified oil burner mechanic, chaired the oil-fired appliances working group that was created by the government following the deaths of five people in Porter Creek.

According to court documents, at the time of his dismissal, Perreault was making $113,091 annually plus vacation leave, various bonuses and medical benefits.

He says his wrongful dismissal means he’s lost those type of benefits. “In particular, the plaintiff’s wrongful dismissal has deprived the plaintiff of certain retirement benefits,” the lawsuit says.

He is also suing for mental distress, claiming the government laid him off when they knew he was “particularly vulnerable.”

The sides are scheduled to meet for a case management conference in May.

Contact Ashley Joannou at

ashleyj@yukon-news.com

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