Jan Borowy’s practice areas include labour relations, human rights, pay equity and professional regulation in health care. She works extensively on issues of pay equity, human rights and occupational health and safety, including preventing workplace violence and harassment. She represents trade unions, employees, and civil society coalitions.
Jan brings to her practice a longstanding commitment to the promotion of social justice, workers’ rights and human rights. Her experience gives her an understanding of the importance of a clear strategy in litigation, negotiations, campaigns, and organizing.
Jan is the co-chair of the Equal Pay Coalition, the main advocacy organization in Canada to close the gender pay gap.
Jan regularly appears before labour arbitrators, the Pay Equity Hearings Tribunal, the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario and Canadian and Ontario labour boards. She has appeared at Divisional Court on pay equity and occupational health and safety matters. She appeared at the Supreme Court of Canada representing the Women's Equality Coalition, which intervened on two important pay equity matters. She sits as a union-appointed sides person in interest arbitrations primarily in the health sector.
Prior to joining the firm, Jan worked in the labour movement as a Research Co-ordinator with a private sector union, and later she was on staff at a large public sector union. She also worked at Parkdale Community Legal Services as a community legal worker advocating on behalf of non-union employees.
Jan has been a guest speaker and workshop leader on numerous occasions at the Osgoode Certificate programme in Clinical Risk, Negligence and Claims Management in Health Care, the Canadian Labour Congress and the Ontario Federation of Labour.
Jan obtained her LL.B. from Osgoode Hall Law School in 2008 and was called to the Ontario bar in June 2009. At law school, Jan developed an expertise in Aboriginal law and issues facing Indigenous workers. Jan first started with the firm as a researcher with Mary Cornish in 2006. She joined the firm as a lawyer after her call to the bar.
Jan has a Master of Arts in Canadian politics from York University and has published several articles on the impact of economic restructuring in the Canadian labour market.
She is the past-Vice-President-Ontario of the Canadian Association of Labour Lawyers and continues to be a member. She is also a member of the Canadian and Ontario Bar Associations.
Recent Notable Cases
- In Canada Post Corporation v. Canadian Union of Postal Workers ("CUPW"), CUPW won a historic pay equity victory for rural and suburban mail carriers ("RSMCs"), who are predominately women. In May 2018, Arbitrator Flynn ruled that Canada Post Corporation breached its obligation to ensure equal pay for work of equal value for the RSMCs. This work was found to be of equal value to the work carried out by the male-dominated group of Letter Carriers. Arbitrator Flynn ordered the parties into a 90-day negotiation period to finalize the details of her award, particularly with respect to benefits and pensions.
- In September 2018, CUPW received the award determining the remedy in the RSMCs arbitration. Arbitrator Flynn found that the weighted average pay gap between the female-dominated RSMCs and the male-dominated urban letter carriers was $5.31 an hour. As a result, the RSMCs will receive pay increases of that amount, plus improvements in many other benefits, including vacation leave and pre-retirement leave.