When a respondent is first made aware that a Human Rights application has been filed against them, often their first response is to deny any accusations and to request a summary hearing in hopes of disposing of the matter at the outset. While such hearings may be requested, it does not always work to the advantage of the respondent. Such was the case in the recent Interim Decision of Lomotey v. Kitchener Waterloo Multicultural Centre.
Under section 46.3 (1) of Ontario's Human Rights Code, an employer may be vicariously liable for the discriminatory acts of their employees. Such was the case in the recent Human Rights Tribunal decision.
A few years back, the human rights system in Ontario was overhauled. The Human Rights Commission was to no longer investigate complaints and refer them to the Human Rights Tribunal (if they had some merit). All cases were to now go directly to the Tribunal for adjudication. Applicants (who are primarily employees) would have “direct access” to the Tribunal.