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Can an employee “sign away” their human rights?: Brown v. Prime Communications Canada Inc.

employment-law-toronto-sambrano-sThe question became relevant in the recent case of Brown v. Prime Communications Canada Inc. After signing a release with her employer, the Applicant, Stephanie Brown filed an application with the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario alleging discrimination with respect to employment because of sex contrary to the Human Rights Code. [i] (more…)

Family status under the Code: Recent developments

Sambrano Human rights marital statusThe seminal cases dealing with discrimination based on family status more often than not address the issue of caregiving. See: Family status: Recent interpretation under the Human Rights Code. See: Employee not discriminated against as breastfeeding a “choice”- Federal Court of Appeal Decision. In the recent case, Knox-Heldmann v. 1818224 Ontario Limited o/a Country Style Donut, the Tribunal demonstrates that discrimination based on family status is not restricted to caregiving. (more…)

No reasonable prospect of success: Howell v. United Steelworkers, Local 7135:

sambrano legal human rights paralegal domRule 19A of the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal’s Rules of Procedure, allow the Tribunal to hold a summary hearing to determine whether the Application should be dismissed in whole or in part on the basis that there is no reasonable prospect that the Application or part of the Application will succeed.[i] This was the case in Howell v. United Steelworkers, Local 7135. (more…)

No “give and take” required by employee in accommodation under the Human Rights Code

Toronto human rights advocate human rightsThe applicant, Michele Macan, filed a human rights application alleging discrimination with respect to employment due to disability. The respondent, Stongco Limited Partnership, rejected the allegations, instead submitting that the applicant’s disability was “not a reason, a factor, or even considered in its decision to terminate the applicant”.[1]

The respondent alleged that her termination was a result of a restructuring within the applicant’s department. The hearing was held over the course of 3 days.

Background

Prior to the applicant being hired, the applicant had been diagnosed with a chronic medical condition which required frequent time off from work. At the time of her termination, the applicant had worked (more…)

Respondents challenge $100,000.00 human rights decision

Toronto Paralegal human Rights SambranoWhile more often than not the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario’s decisions are not challenged, there are two processes by which this may be done. The first is called a request for reconsideration. The second is an application for judicial review. The latter was the case in Big Inc. v. Islam, 2015 ONSC 2921. (more…)

The Human Rights Code and Res Judicata: G.G. v. […] Ontario Limited

Toronto Paralegal Generally speaking, res judicata[1] (Latin for “a thing adjudicated”) is the legal doctrine which prevents the same matter from being tried a second time once there has been a verdict or decision in regard to that matter. Under Ontario’s Human Rights Code, a criminal matter being decided in regard to a matter that contains a breach of the Human Rights Code does not necessarily prevent an applicant from filing at the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario. This was the case in G.G. v. […] Ontario Limited. (more…)

“Conduct of the respondent was heavy handed and unjustifiable”

Sambrano Legal Human Rights Employment Law

The recent Human Rights decision of Rollick v. 1526597 Ontario Inc. o/a Tim Horton’s Store No. 2533, addresses what the Tribunal characterized as “heavy handed and unjustifiable” conduct on the part of the employer, when dealing with an employee with a disability.

The applicant, Sabrina Rollick, filed a human rights complaint alleging discrimination based on disability. The respondent did not file a response. A hearing was held in the respondent’s absence. (more…)

Emra v. Impression Bridal Ltd.: The hefty price of ignorance of the “Code”

Discrimination

“…the Code contains a preamble which reflects the kinds of experiences the legislation is directed at remedying. It speaks not just to equality in relation to the law, but also to the values of understanding, mutual respect and dignity and the necessity to ensure that every citizen has the opportunity to contribute fully to the community.”[1] (more…)

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

sambranolegalhumanrights

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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