Ontario Human Rights Tribunal and Paralegals
Most Canadians who have experienced discrimination in rental accommodation, or employment would likely think about their Canadian Charter Rights, but not everyone knows that there is a difference between human rights law and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
Grounds of discrimination vary slightly depending on jurisdiction. As such, a qualified legal representative should check the applicable human rights legislation to help determine whether or not your rights may have been violated.
If you believe that your rights to equal treatment have been broken or ignored, or that you’ve been discriminated against, or you are being harassed, call Sean O’Connor for his expert opinion and clear advice.
Sean is a Licensed Paralegal with the Law Society of Upper Canada and the owner of Ticketsave, a successful paralegal practice. Sean is respected as a highly effective advocate, who can get the results you need.
FREE Consultation, Click To Call: 416.835.7411
Human rights laws and legislation are organized by jurisdiction determined by the constitutional division of powers. The Canadian Human Rights Act applies throughout Canada, but only to federal government departments, crown corporations, and agencies and private sector organizations such as banks, airlines, trucking companies, and telecommunications firms. These organizations are federally regulated.
On the other hand, complaints involving school boards, city government, or restaurants are in provincial jurisdiction. Each province and territory have its own anti-discrimination law that applies to activities that are not federally regulated.
“The Ontario Human Rights Tribunal resolves claims of discrimination and harassment brought under the Human Rights Code in a fair, just and timely way.”
The Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario is the administrative tribunal in Ontario that hears and determines applications brought under the Ontario Human Rights Code. The Ontario Human Rights Code is the provincial statute that prohibits discrimination on the basis of a number of grounds such as race, sex or disability in certain social areas such as services, housing or employment.
The Ontario Human Rights Code governs the conduct of both the private and public sectors including the conduct between individuals within certain social areas. These areas include:
- Housing accommodation
- Services, goods & facilities
- Membership in trade unions and vocational associations
The prohibited grounds of discrimination apply to the areas of:
- Place of Origin
- Ethnic Origin
- Colour, complexion
- Creed, religion
- Gender Identity
- Sexual Orientation
- Marital Status
- Family Status
- Record of Offences
- Disability (mental, physical and perceived)
Depending on whether your complaint falls under provincial or federal jurisdiction, your complaint will be filed with either the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario or the Canadian Human Rights Commission. The complaint may first go through mediation, where, if both parties consent to participate, an impartial mediator will attempt to bring the parties to a mutually acceptable agreement. If this fails, or if both parties do not consent to mediation, the complaint may proceed to a formal hearing, where an impartial adjudicator will hear from both sides, and come to a decision as to whether there was a breach of the applicable laws, and, if so, what remedies (such as an apology, damages, or specific performance such as reinstatement of employment or a promotion) ought to be ordered.
Likewise, if a complaint of discrimination is filed against you, contact a qualified paralegal or legal expert to rebuke it by showing your actions as the respondent were justified.
Indeed, both federal and provincial human rights laws prohibit discrimination in all areas of employment, public accommodation, services and facilities, the leasing and sale of property, membership in labour unions, professional associations and the dissemination of hate propaganda.