Toronto Sun – She is helping friend, Ray Nemard, 40, in his bid to obtain an apology from the commission after he was allegedly called a “f****** monkey,” by an operator at Coxwell subway station in 2004.
A complaint was filed to the Ontario Human Rights Commission, which is hearing his case.
“I am not happy by what I heard today,” Nemard said after the meeting. “The operator who did this to me is still on the job even though we know he has 16 complaints against him.”
He takes “pills and other medication” to help him cope with the slur, which he said led to a loss of his job as a chef.
Tag Archives: Barbara Hall
Ottawa Citizen – What a difference a week makes. Just days after that final ruling, the Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations (OFSAA), which oversees high school sports, was forced to stand down on the same issue. OFSAA was advised it was about to lose a challenge before the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal on its written policy denying girls the right to try out for boys’ teams if a girls’ team exists in the school.
Now, girls can play on a boys’ team in Ontario’s 860-plus high schools if they successfully try out. The switch is now sparking heated discussions about how to manage school sports everywhere.
StarPhoenix - There are good reasons why the Court of Queen’s Bench is not a good replacement option for the human rights tribunal.
Three comprehensive reviews of provincial human rights systems have said just that, for reasons of access to justice, expertise in human rights, and representativeness of different sections of the community. The Ontario Human Rights Code review task force, Achieving Equality: A Report on Human Rights Reform, 1992; B.C. Human Rights Review: Report on Human Rights in British Columbia, 1994; and the report of the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission, Renewing the Vision: Human Rights in Saskatchewan, 1996.
Vancouver Sun – Female high school athletes in Ontario will have the opportunity to crack the roster of boys’ teams next year after amendments were made to a provincewide policy following a human rights complaint.
The Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations (OFSAA) said it will allow girls to try out for boys’ teams after Courtney Greer, a Grade 11 soccer player from Waterloo, Ont., a filed formal complaint.
Toronto Star – City bureaucrats may withdraw funding from Pride Toronto next year if the activist group Queers Against Israeli Apartheid is allowed to march in this summer’s parade.
The city, which gave Pride $121,000 in 2009, believes its anti-discrimination policy was likely violated by QuAIA’s conduct and even its very presence at last summer’s parade, said general manager of economic development and culture Mike Williams…
“They’re trying to compare it to hate speech, and I find it deeply offensive, as somebody who’s been fighting human rights battles for a really long time, to hear that criticism of the state of Israel is somehow hate speech. No way,” said Flanders, one of several Jewish QuAIA members.
“I’m a big Jew-lover. And my Judaism taught me to stand up for what is right. This has nothing to do with anything other than criticism of Israel … Political difference need not be censored.”
Globe and Mail – Environmental sensitivity is listed as a disability in Ontario’s Human Rights Code, which means that employers have a duty to accommodate the needs of the environmentally sensitive in the workplace.
However the rule doesn’t specifically address scent sensitivities as a disability, says Pascale Demers, spokesperson for the Ontario Human Rights Commission.
The commission has only ever received two complaints from employees about scent sensitivity. Both were settled privately, and the commission has no information about what was decided, Ms. Demers says.
Toronto Star – Call Ontario’s new human-rights legal centre for help with racism and the telephone wait time could last up to 20 minutes.
Some people who have experienced discrimination will eventually get advice. Others give up and never call back.
Earlier today, the Star revealed that the centre is swamped with allegations of sex, race and disability discrimination, leaving front-line staff able to answer only 57 percent of the 38,579 calls received in the year-long period ending March 31.
According to salary disclosure rules, only people earning over $100,000/year must be listed for public viewing. Here are the numbers from 2008.
We cut some slack and didn’t add up the cents.
Top earner: Nancy Austin, Executive Director. $211,469
Lowest earner: Roxanne Kalimootoo, Registrar. $100,174
Middle of the road: Barbara Hall, Chief Commissioner. $139,869
Total Salaries for the 17 earning over 100 grand: $2,583,805
Average pay per year for the 17 earning over 100 grand: $151,988
Toronto Star – Ontario’s newly streamlined human rights watchdog is swamped with allegations of sex, race and disability discrimination, the Starhas found.
“We are really overwhelmed by our volume of cases now,” said Katherine Laird, the senior official whose job it is to support people who say they are victims. “Our phones are ringing off the hook.”
The Ontario Attorney General created a new human rights system nearly two years ago, making it easier for people with claims to get a hearing before the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario…
Ontario Human Rights Commission chair Barbara Hall believes only a small number of cases are ever reported. “This is the tip of the iceberg,” she says.
Canadian Occupational Safety – Then, the court stated, “an essential element of the job of a paramedic is to transport patients as quickly as possible. It was accepted by the arbitrator and admitted before us that there will be delays if a paramedic is unable to drive. Extending human rights protection to situations that will result in placing the lives of others at risk flies in the face of logic…accordingly, the decision of the arbitrator dated July 2, 2007 is set aside.”
Standard-Freeholder – Corcoran was told to step down from his role on the altar at Sunday Mass in April last year when parishioners complained to Bishop Nicola de Angelis that an openly homosexual couple was serving on the altar at St. Michael’s. Corcoran alleges he is being excluded from a role in the parish solely because he is gay, and that this violates the Ontario Human Rights Code.
The 12 St. Michael’s parishioners claim the Human Rights Code does not have jurisdiction over liturgical roles in a church and that internal church governance is protected by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
Corcoran is asking for damages of $20,000 from each of the parishioners and that the diocese cover his legal costs.
CBC – The Toronto police service has started an internal review on how officers conduct searches and arrests when dealing with people from various religions, CBC News has learned.
The review was sparked by a human rights complaint in July 2008 after a police officer removed a Muslim woman’s hijab, or head scarf.
The complaint eventually made its way to the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal, where it was settled out of court before a hearing could occur this past January.
Due to privacy rules, CBC News was not able to obtain a copy of the complaint or learn the identity of the Muslim woman.
Ottawa Citizen – But as Richard Grainer discusses the fumes from fabric softener sheets his neighbours use in their clothes dryer and how that toxic air could kill his asthmatic three-year-old, I wonder why he is so intent on continuing his battle with his landlord, turning now to the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario for help, when he could simply move…
Grainer says in hindsight, he might have moved had he known he would still be fighting this battle. But he thinks he is on the verge of winning it. And, he says, he really likes living in New Edinburgh.
I guess that answers my question. But wouldn’t watching a three-year-old suffer repeated asthma attacks be reason enough to say goodbye to the landlord?
National Post – I can’t make up my mind which I want to come back as in my next life, a thin-skinned lesbian or a serial pedophile.
“…the cap on damages has been removed…I’ll be exploring how the Tribunal has been handling applications under the new and transitional rules, and strategies you can use if you appear before the Tribunal. I’ll also be discussing damage awards after the cap…”
Toronto Sun - Let’s put the brakes on right here. This is silly.
As indicated by the commission itself on Friday, it’s just part of a restructuring.
And there will be plenty more as the feds trim the public service.
It’s a major headache any time local government offices close. Filing complaints will indeed be a tad tougher.
But let’s be honest. It’s not the catastrophe they are making it out to be.
570 News – The region is spending more than two million dollars to equip its buses with automated technology that will call out all stops for passengers. The $2.4-million investment will put Grand River Transit in compliance with an Ontario Human Rights Commission ruling that requires all systems to accommodate passengers who are visually or hearing impaired.
Guelph Mercury – Matt Wozenilek can’t wait to try out the wheelchair-accessible door at his neighbourhood 7-Eleven store after taking the company to the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal and winning…
He filed an application with the tribunal Jan. 7, 2009 and later amended it, asking for $25,000 for pain and suffering, a public letter of regret from 7-Eleven and the installation of automatic doors at all 7-Eleven stores in Canada…
The tribunal decided the company did not have to write a public letter of regret but it would have to pay $6,000 to Wozenilek.
“I asked for $25,000 to get their attention,” Wozenilek said Wednesday. “I’m happy with the $6,000. It will cover my expenses.”
National Post – And indeed, why bother? The number of cases that end like Mr. Fulton’s, with the accused walking away free from conviction or having to pay out a sizable amount of money, are very few indeed. Many cases settle at the mediation stage, when the nature of the shakedown process is first revealed. Targets are told, in essence, “You can settle for $25,000 now or pay $200,000 in legal fees later. Take your pick.” Most pick settlement…
I phoned the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario to ask why they had not adopted rules on costs. The spokesperson told me that any changes to the rules would require public consultation, and they had no public consultation scheduled. Just one feeble excuse after another. Meanwhile, the shakedowns continue.
CNW – The Ontario Human Rights Commission, the City of Toronto, the Federation of Rental-Housing Providers of Ontario, the Greater Toronto Apartment Association and the Human Rights Legal Support Centre have joined forces to promote housing as a human right. The partners are encouraging Toronto tenants and landlords to learn more about these rights by today launching a poster that will appear in 120 transit shelters across Toronto during the month of March.
Toronto Star - Tad Klupsas is legally blind and doesn’t drive.
He likes to shop on the Internet.
But he was frustrated by a recent purchase at Future Shop’s website. His order wasn’t processed correctly and he was unable to use any refund options he was given…
“Your refusal to provide alternate contacts is a violation of the Canadian and Ontario human rights codes,” he said in an email, adding that he was a long-time customer of Future Shop and hoped to remain one.
Luckily, he has strong glasses that allow him to read the Toronto Star. He wrote to me a week later, since his problem was still not resolved.
[National Post] The Ontario Medical Association wants the provincial licensing body to kill a proposal that would force physicians to put aside their religious beliefs when making decisions in their medical practice.
The controversial document by the College of Physicians and Surgeons Ontario, which will be voted on next week, warns doctors that the provincial Human Rights Commission will get more aggressive with those who appear to violate an individual’s right to get treatment. It also suggests doctors could face misconduct charges from the College for those human rights violations, something that does not exist now in the province or in any other part of Canada.
The OHRC decision was made last year. Last week, it held up on appeal. Here’s the story:
[Financial Post, Sept 10 2008] Firing an employee for not disclosing his medical condition can be a very expensive error.
A few weeks after the terrorist attacks on the United States, Paul Lane applied for a job at ADGA, assisting it to develop software for the Department of National Defence. During his interview with the manager, Miranda Corbett, Lane failed to disclose he had bipolar disorder. He also lied about the number of sick days he had taken during the preceding 12 months.
Four days after he was hired, he told Corbett about his condition and that he would require time off if he began to experience a “manic episode.” He also said, if he began to show symptoms of rapid speech and extreme restlessness, management was to immediately contact his wife or doctor.
Following this meeting, he began to exhibit erratic behaviour. For example, much to the surprise of the program manager, he sent this e-mail: “Thanks a Million! Luv and Kisses. Paul.” The following week, Lane’s symptoms escalated to paranoia. He reported receiving death threats and hearing explosions in the building. This was obviously worrisome to a department assisting National Defence so soon after the horrific events of Sept. 11, 2001…
- $35,000 in general damages for injury to his dignity and self-worth;
- $10,000 for reckless infliction of mental anguish;
- $34,278.75 for loss of salary;
- pre- and post-judgment interest on the above sums
[National Post] The OHRC’s conclusion, though couched as mere friendly advice, states barefaced that “doctors, as providers of services that are not religious in nature, must essentially ‘check their personal views at the door’ in providing medical care.”
The gall of such a statement is stunning. Abortion? Contraception? Fertility counselling for same-sex couples? How are those not services that are “religious in nature”? Every one of the world’s major religions has had views on these actions for hundreds of years.
They could only be considered non-religious in nature if you were a detached, disconnected, pompous human rights twit who was convinced you had the power to provide written-in-stone, immutable definitions that were binding on all concerned.
More international bad press for Canadian human rights commissions.
[The Australian] All this is frighteningly reminiscent of the situation in Canada, where official agencies of the state prosecute citizens for the thought-crime of political incorrectness. Canada’s federal and provincial human rights commissions were established to fight discrimination in housing and employment. But these quasi-judicial bodies have metastasised into partisan star-chamber tribunals that selectively file charges against those who espouse conservative political or religious beliefs.