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Gender identity and gender expression in employment: Vanderputten v. Seydaco Packaging Corp.

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On June 19, 2012 the Human Rights Code (Ontario) was amended adding two new protected grounds of discrimination, namely “gender identity” and “gender expression”. The first interpretation of these new grounds was examined in the Human Rights Tribunal decision in (more…)

The cost of racial stereotyping: Adams v. Knoll North America

Human Rights Sambrano LegalThe applicant, Colin Adams who identifies as Black, worked as a machine operator at Knoll North America Corp. (“Knoll”) for 9 years. Following a verbal altercation with his supervisor, the applicant was terminated after he refused to partake in an anger management program as a requirement of his continued employment. (more…)

Lugonia v. Arista Homes: Pregnancy, short-term contracts and the “Code”

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In the summer of 2013 the applicant, Amanda Lugonia, began a new job at the same time she discovered she was starting a new family, the result of which was instant dismissal from her new employer. The respondent denied that the applicant’s pregnancy was a factor in the termination of her employment and in addition denied knowledge of the pregnancy, claiming the reason for her termination was due to lack of “fit”.[1]

The applicant, Ms. Lugonia, was hired to replace a receptionist who was preparing for a one year maternity leave. Ms. Lugonia had undergone two interviews in the early summer of 2013 and had performed quite well. As a matter of fact, her future employers were so impressed with Ms. Lugonia (more…)

Sexual harassment under the Code: Smith v. The Rover’s Rest

wikisexualharassmentThe case of Smith v. The Rover’s Rest, 2013 HRTO 700 is a recent case dealing with sexual harassment and reprisal under the Human Rights Code of Ontario.

At the time of the incidents, the applicant, Debbie Smith was a 39-year-old mother being paid $7.00 per hour as a bartender at the Rover’s Rest in Ajax, Ontario. The applicant worked at the bar between February and September of 2009. On November 8, 2009 Ms. Smith filed an application with the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario alleging that the individual respondent, the manager and owner of the small business, Bruce Dorman had subjected her to sexual harassment and advances during employment. Further, the application alleged she was terminated when she refused these advances and when the respondent wrongly believed that she was in a relationship with someone else.[1] She further alleged, that after she was terminated, the respondent delivered discriminatory, harassing and threatening letters to her. (more…)

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