A small vegetable and herb business in Ontario recently ran afoul of the Ontario Human Rights Code (“Code”) because it blindly adhered to its attendance policy and failed to consider any alternatives to an employee’s request for a day off work to observe a religious holiday because it interfered with its business demands. The Ontario Human Rights Tribunal’s (“OHRT”) decision in H.T. v. ES Holdings Inc. o/a Country Herbs, 2015 HRTO 1067, is a reminder to small and large business alike to use a thoughtful analysis in meeting both the “procedural” and “substantive” duty to accommodate the legitimate religious needs of their employees.
In this case, Country Herbs operated a small vegetable and herb business that supplied vegetables and herbs to customers in Toronto. Country Herbs busiest days were Monday to replenish stock from the prior weekend and Thursdays to stock for the upcoming weekend. Country Herbs has 23 … Continue reading “HRTO concludes teenage Mennonites discriminated against when fired for observing a religious holiday”