Andrea York
Partner | Toronto
Toronto: 416-863-5263

Andrea is an experienced advocate with over 20 years of experience in the areas of employment and privacy law. Her practice is devoted exclusively to advising corporations and other employers on employment and privacy law matters.

Andrea's focus is to provide clients with timely and practical advice. She works with employers across a variety of sectors, including banking and financial services, retail, manufacturing, health-care products, technology, and marketing and advertising. In addition to providing day-to-day compliance and strategic advice, she regularly acts for employers in various legal proceedings, including wrongful dismissal and human rights claims and in claims enforcing post-employment obligations. Andrea also advises on the employment and privacy law aspects of commercial transactions, including M&A transactions, reorganizations, insolvencies and outsourcing transactions.

Andrea is the Practice Group Leader of the Blakes Employment & Labour group and Co-Chair of the Firm's Privacy group. Andrea is also a member of the Blakes NITRO team and a member and past Co-Chair of the Diversity & Inclusion Committee at Blakes

SELECT EXPERIENCE
  • Lead employment law partner for IMCD Group in its acquisition of the specialty chemicals and ingredients distributor L.V. Lomas (now IMCD Canada Limited)

  • Led the Blakes employment law team advising Wells Fargo on the Canadian employment law aspects of its US$31-billion acquisition of GE Capital's global commercial distribution finance and vendor finance businesses

  • Successfully defended multi-national employer in credibility-focused Human Rights Tribunal hearing dealing with claim of pregnancy discrimination following termination

  • Represented multi-national transportation company in Human Rights Tribunal hearing in high-profile case involving a conflict between religious accommodation requirements and worker health and safety

  • Regularly negotiates and drafts executive employment contracts, termination agreements, restrictive covenant agreements, and advises on incentive compensation arrangements and employee policies

AWARDS & RECOGNITION

Andrea has been recognized for her expertise by the following publications:

  • Chambers Canada: Canada’s Leading Lawyers for Business 2019 (Employment & Labour - Ontario)

  • The Best Lawyers in Canada - 2017-2019 (Labour & Employment Law)

  • The Legal 500 Canada - 2017-2019 (Labour and Employment Law)

  • Chambers Canada 2018 (Recognized Practitioner)

  • Acritas Stars 2018: Independently Rated Lawyer (Nominated as a stand-out lawyer by senior in-house counsel)

  • Who's Who Legal: Labour, Employment & Benefits 2017 (Labour & Employment)

Andrea was also named a Canadian Diversity Champion by Women of Influence magazine in 2012.

PUBLICATIONS
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Co-author: Employment and Labour Law - 2019 Canada Chapter
Global Legal Insights, Seventh Edition, Global Legal Group, December 2018.
Co-author: Ontario Court Clarifies Employers’ Duties in Mass Termination Cases
Employment and Labour Law Reporter, Volume 28, No. 8, November 2018.
Co-author: Employment Module (Constructive Dismissal section)
Lexis Practice Advisor, September 2018.
Blakes Bulletin on The Sharing Economy, June 12, 2018.
Blakes Bulletin on Employment & Labour, May 8, 2018.
Blakes Bulletin on Employment & Labour, January 25, 2018.
Co-author: Practice note, Employee Privacy Notice (Canada)
Thomson Reuters (Professional) UK Limited, October 2017.
Co-author: Practice note, Candidate Privacy Notice (Canada)
Thomson Reuters (Professional) UK Limited, October 2017.
Co-author: Recent Developments in Employment and Labour Law, Dismissal Law Update
Blakes Labour & Employment Client Seminar on Recent Developments in Labour and Employment Law, Toronto, Ontario, June 15, 2017.
Co-author: Top 10 Recent Developments in Canadian Dismissal Law
Recent Developments in Labour and Employment Law, Blakes Business Class Seminar, Toronto, Ontario, June 9, 2016.
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PROFESSIONAL APPEARANCES
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Co-presenter: Human Rights and Employment Law Issues relating to Canadian Benefit Arrangements
Blakes Business Class Seminar on Recent Developments in Pension and Employee Benefits Law, Toronto, Ontario, October 30, 2018.
Panel Member: Being Prepared for Today’s Workplace – A Discussion on Employment and Workplace Privacy Law
Association of Corporate Counsel - Ontario Chapter, Inc., Toronto, Ontario, September 20, 2018.
Panel Member: Drug and Alcohol Testing
Connections Conference, Stockholm, Sweden, May 2018.
Co-presenter: Avoiding and Addressing Harassment Complaints in the 'Me Too' Era
Blakes Business Class Seminar, Toronto, Ontario, April 18, 2018.
Panel Member: Hot Privacy Topics: Hiring, Health and Hacks
13th Annual Conference, Canadian Association of Counsel to Employers, Winnipeg, Manitoba, September 22-24, 2016.
Presenter: Recent Developments in Employment and Labour Law, Dismissal Law Update
Blakes Labour & Employment Client Seminar on Recent Developments in Labour and Employment Law, Toronto, Ontario, June 15, 2017.
Panel Member: Employee Whistleblower Protections
Connections Conference, Dublin, Ireland, May 2017.
Moderator: Balancing Interests: Employee Monitoring & Workplace Privacy
International Association of Privacy Professionals, KnowledgeNet, Toronto, Ontario, January 2017.
Presenter: Emerging Ethical Trends in Workplace Law
Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP, Toronto, Ontario, February 24, 2016.
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MEDIA APPEARANCES
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Quoted: Federal pay equity bill puts onus on employers
Article by Dale Smith, Law Times, November 12, 2018.
Quoted: Retailers squeezed by new rules. New pay and scheduling laws causing uncertainty for retailers and restaurants
Article by Meagan Gillmore, Canadian Lawyer, July 3, 2018.
Quoted: Credit for Service Clarified after Company Changes Hands
Article by Dale Smith, Law Times, May 28, 2018.
Quoted: Alberta: Top Court Upholds Employer's 'No Free Accident' Drug Policy
Article by Peter Menyasz, Bloomberg BNA, July 6, 2017.
Quoted: Take Care With Tracking Monitoring, Outside Employee Movement May Violate Privacy Laws
Article by Sandra Rubin, Lexpert Magazine, February 1, 2017.
Quoted: Take Care with Tracking Monitoring, Outside Employee Movement May Violate Privacy Laws
Article by Sandra Rubin, Lexpert Magazine, February 1, 2017.
Quoted: Employee reinstated after 14 years
Article by Jillian Kestler-D'Amours, The Lawyers Weekly, June 24, 2016.
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