The Lynch List, 2-July-2010

Happy Canada Day! Despite the thrice weekly posts on this blog that takes issue with our country’s human rights system, Canada Day reminds me to be thankful for what we have – and that things could be much, much worse.

With that out of the way, here’s the rundown to end the week:

First: Thank you, Wally Keeler, for speaking our mind:

The public issue is the amount of money that was spent on this frivolous case by the Ontario Human Rights Commission. Jim Corcoran, the complainant, got a free ride, on the public’s dime, and in return the public got NOTHING. My questions are for Jim Corcoran and especially the Commission; specifically, why they presumed to have the power to meddle in the internal affairs of a religious organization, on an issue that had nothing to do with discrimination in terms of housing or employment.

Second: The turban/hardhat issue will not be put to rest. The Tribunal found Home Depot guilty of discrimination when it asked a Sikh security employee to wear a hardhat while construction was ongoing.

There will be no remedies granted in the case until the board determines whether the Occupational Health and Safety law that requires a hard hat to be worn is valid under the Human Rights Code, said Loomba’s lawyer, Raj Anand.

Third: A report by an organization sympathetic to the HRCs notes a problem with the process:

As in all statutory human rights cases, complainants who alleged discrimination in services carried the initial burden of proving, on a balance of probabilities, a prima facie case of discrimination. But what a complainant was required to demonstrate in order to satisfy this burden was not consistent from case to case. A myriad of tests for prima facie discrimination has emerged in the jurisprudence, and there is great disagreement among decision makers as to which test is appropriate to apply in various circumstances. This issue is far from being a matter of mere academic interest, however, for some tests have proven to be more difficult for complainants to satisfy than others.

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2 Responses to The Lynch List, 2-July-2010

  1. […] LYNCH MOBBERY– The Lynch List, 06-July-2010; The Lynch List, 2-July-2010; The Lynch List, 30-Jun-2010 …. […]

  2. ON Human Wrong Code says:

    With respect to the “Third Report”. The test for prima facie discrimination under HRC’s was set out by the Supreme Court of Canada in, Ont Human Rights Comm. v. Simpson-Sears,1985 Canlii 18 (S.C.C.),[1985]2 S.C.R. 536,(“O’Malley”) at para. 28:

    “The complainant in proceedings before human rights tribunals must show a prima facie case of discrimination. A prima facie case in this context is one which covers the allegations made and which, if they are believed, is complete and sufficient to justify a verdict in the complainant’s favour in the absence of an answer from the respondent…”

    The Tribunal is bound by O’Malley in determining whether the complainant has established a prima facie case of discrimination. The threshold is not difficult to meet by any means. Only in the rarest of cases should a complainant fail to make out a prima facie case. Human rights legislation is quasi-constitutional. Those fundamental rights and their meanings have never changed. Therefore, the test used to determine prima facie violation of any of them also should not change. HRT’s really show some set of balls the way they just tailor jurisprudence right before your eyes. Unbelievable

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