January 15, 2020
Today, the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal released a report addressing serious access to justice concerns for Indigenous Peoples bringing human rights complaints to the Tribunal. The report, entitled Expanding Our Vision: Cultural Equality & Indigenous Peoples’ Human Rights, makes far-reaching recommendations that could transform human rights in this province. The Human Rights Tribunal is being joined by Indigenous, legal and human rights organizations in a shared commitment to transform human rights for Indigenous Peoples in the province.
Report author Ardith Walpetko We’dalx Walkem QC surveyed over 100 Indigenous People about their experiences with discrimination and the Human Rights Tribunal. Overwhelmingly those interviewed reported pervasive levels of discrimination. Many Indigenous People had no idea that the Human Rights Tribunal existed, or how to access it. Many said that their experiences of racism as Indigenous Peoples were so widespread that they did not believe it would make any difference to file a complaint with the Human Rights Tribunal.
Expanding our Vision makes nine recommendations. Removing barriers to access to the Human Rights Tribunal is not enough. Structural change is needed to incorporate Indigenous definitions of human rights according to Indigenous laws. The main recommendations broaden the concept of human rights, including adding Indigenous Identity to the BC Human Rights Code and incorporating Indigenous legal traditions and international human rights principles as reflected in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which BC has recently committed to implementing through legislation.
This report is a call to action. The Human Rights Tribunal will actively engage with Indigenous Peoples and communities to move forward in a meaningful way on these recommendations. The report has implications beyond the Tribunal’s work, and we are committed to working collaboratively with others.
January 13, 2020
The Tribunal has updated its Public Access & Media Policy, including about public attendance at hearings, voice recorders, cell phones, and publication bans.
November 7, 2019
The Tribunal has a new practice direction on applications to dismiss against individual respondents.
July 17, 2019
The BCHRT's Annual Report 2018-2019 has been filed with the Clerk of the Legislative Assembly and is now available to the public.
June 14, 2018
The Report of the Working Group on Strengthening Tribunal Processes for Representative Complaints is available for public review. The Tribunal is reviewing the report to determine what recommendations it will implement on an interim basis. The Tribunal will also be conducting the recommended consultations, including with children, youth, persons with disabilities, and relevant organizations. If any other person or group wants to comment on the recommendations, you can send us comments by July 31, 2018 (5 page limit, subject line “Comments on Representative Complaints”).
June 12, 2019
The BC Human Rights Tribunal proudly endorses the Access to Justice Triple Aim which will guide initiatives and reforms for making human rights more accessible to British Columbians.
June 4, 2019
The Tribunal is asking for participants in a survey about Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights.
January 28, 2019
Effective today, the Tribunal's address is:
1270 - 605 Robson Street
Vancouver, BC V6B 5J3
January 9, 2019
The Tribunal's reception is moving to the 12th floor on January 28, 2019. As of that date, the Tribunal's address will be:
1270 - 605 Robson Street
Vancouver, BC V6B 5J3
November 27, 2018
The Human Rights Amendment Act, 2018 (Bill 50), received Royal Assent today.
The following amendments come into effect on Royal Assent
Some amendments will come into effect by regulation:
November 16, 2018
The Tribunal is asking for input about how to protect both privacy and freedom of expression in relation to its process. See the tribunal notices page for more information. Please provide your input by December 14, 2018.
November 1, 2018
The BC Government today introduced the Human Rights Code Amendment Act, 2018. The legislation will establish a Human Rights Commissioner. On Royal Assent, the legislation will also change the time limit for filing a complaint from six months to one year. See the Government's News Release.
October 17, 2018
On October 23, 2018, the Tribunal is scheduled for a computer hardware refresh. We may experience minor interruptions to our telephone and email service during this time. We thank you for your patience.
August 9, 2018
The Tribunal is pleased to announce that Barbara Korenkiewicz, currently a Tribunal Member, will be joining the Tribunal's legal department as Legal Counsel, effective September 4, 2018. We wish Ms. Korenkiewicz much continued success as she transitions into her new role with our legal team.
August 1, 2018
The BCHRT's Annual Report 2017-2018 has been filed with the Clerk of the Legislative Assembly and is now available to the public.
May 30, 2018
The Tribunal has amended its Rules of Practice and Procedure to add rule 36 - Reconsideration of Decisions. The new rule 36 sets out the requirements for an application to reconsider a decision, including a new 14 day time limit.
May 28, 2018
The Tribunal Chair has issued a new practice direction regarding legal authorities.
May 18, 2018
Invitation for intervenors
On September 10 - 13, 2018, the Tribunal will be hearing the case of Morgane Oger v. Bill Whatcott. The complaint alleges that Mr. Whatcott violated s. 7 of the Human Rights Code [Code] when he distributed a number of pamphlets about Ms. Oger’s fitness for public office in light of her gender identity. The complaint raises issues of general public interest, including:
The Tribunal has granted intervenor status to the Canadian Association for Free Expression and the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms, pursuant to s. 22.1 of the Code. In light of the legal issues raised by the complaint, the Tribunal is inviting further intervenor applications up until June 15, 2018. Applications should identify the nature of the applicant and how they will be able to usefully contribute to the legal issues raised in the complaint.
May 8, 2018
The BCHRT is recruiting for a part-time, 0.8 FTE, Legal Counsel. The closing date is May 28, 2018. Friendly reminder that applicants must apply on the BC Public Service site posting linked above. We will not accept applications sent to the BCHRT.
Congratulations to Devyn Cousineau on her appointment as a Tribunal member. We wish her much success in the transition from Legal Counsel to a Tribunal member.
March 7, 2018
The BC Court of Appeal clarified the test for proving retaliation under s. 43 of the Code in Gichuru v. Pallai, 2018 BCCA 78. We have updated our information about retaliation and leading cases.
February 28, 2018
The Tribunal is establishing a working group to address Tribunal process for complaints brought on behalf of a child. By March 28, 2018, send your expression of interest, identifying your relevant experience, to the attention of:
November 1, 2017
There is a full time vacancy for the position of Tribunal Member coming available in January 2018. A posting is open now until December 15, 2017.
November 1, 2017
Devyn Cousineau has been appointed as a member of the Tribunal for a six month term beginning November 1, 2017.
November 1, 2017
The Tribunal issued service standards, effective November 1, 2017.
October 26, 2017
The Tribunal is withdrawing the Settlement Meeting Policy. We have updated the Frequently Asked Questions About Settlement Meetings (Mediation).
October 24, 2017
The Tribunal amended rule 7 of its Rules of Practice and Procedure.
October 13, 2017
The Tribunal made its Submission to Parliamentary Secretary Ravi Kahlon regarding the re-establishment of a Human Rights Commission in British Columbia.
September 21, 2017
The Government of British Columbia is re-establishing the B.C. Human Rights Commission. Everyone is welcome to contribute their views about the role, functions and priorities of the new commission.
Find out more about the consultation.
September 20, 2017
The Tribunal's Annual Report 2016-2017 has been tabled in the Legislature.
September 15, 2017
The Tribunal is considering an amendment to Rule 7 - Representation before the Tribunal. We would like to receive feedback about the draft amended rule, set out below. Please address your comments to the Registrar by October 13, 2017.
Draft Rule 7 - Representation before the Tribunal
How participants may be represented
Withdrawal of representative
Responsibilities of participants and representatives
Consequences for failure to comply
May 12, 2017
The Tribunal has added leading cases to the law library. We will be adding content in the coming weeks. The first additions to the leading cases are in the areas of employment, tenancy, and publication.
May 3, 2017
Call for lawyers - BC Human Rights Tribunal ILA List
The BC Human Rights Tribunal is seeking lawyers who would like to put their names forward to provide independent legal advice [ILA] to participants at the Tribunal.
Generally, parties who are looking for ILA need it on an urgent and limited basis.
Interested lawyers, please email the following information under the subject [ILA List] to my attention at the address below:
April 6, 2017
The Tribunal has made changes to its website to improve user accessibility. You will need to update your favourites.
January 30, 2017
To assist parties preparing for judicial review, the Tribunal has posted information about the standard of review including links to court decisions.
November 9, 2016
The Tribunal has posted information about compensation for injury to dignity, feelings, and self-respect, including case summaries.
October 20, 2016
The Tribunal received confirmation that our Annual Report for fiscal year 2015-2016 was filed with the Clerk of the Legislative Assembly and is now available to the public.
September 9, 2016
Special programs and employment equity initiatives are unique ways to advance equality. The Tribunal has updated its information and policies respecting these proactive initiatives, and has developed new forms for organizations seeking approval of a special program.
August 2, 2016
On July 28, 2016, the Human Rights Code Amendment Act, 2016 came into effect. The amendment:
The Tribunal will update its forms to reflect these changes.
July 25, 2016
Attorney General and Minister of Justice Suzanne Anton issued a statement proposing amendments to B.C.’s Human Rights Code to include gender identity or expression among the protected grounds covered by the Code.
July 21, 2016
We are pleased to announce the appointments of new members, Barbara Korenkiewicz and Emily Ohler, effective June 9, 2016.
June 14, 2016
Diana Juricevic has been appointed as tribunal chair, effective August 1, 2016. The government issued a press release.
April 8, 2016
The Tribunal will begin surveying our participants this month. The purpose is to evaluate and improve the Tribunal's services to the public. The survey is short and confidential. Participation is voluntary, but we strongly encourage you to participate. It is only with your feedback that we can improve the complaint process.
Individual surveys will be tailored to a party's experience at the tribunal and emailed to them after their case closes. Look at all the possible survey questions.
If you have any questions, please contact us.
January 15, 2016
The Tribunal has issued amended Rules and new forms. See:
With these changes the Tribunal has amended:
January 4, 2016
Amendments to the Human Rights Code and Administrative Tribunals Act came into effect on December 17, 2015. (See Order in Council No. 797 regarding the Administrative Tribunals Statutes Amendment Act, 2015.) We will add links to the amended legislation as soon as they are available. The amendments to the Human Rights Code include changes to:
The amendments to the Administrative Tribunals Act affecting the tribunal include:
October 1, 2015
The Tribunal seeks a regular Legal Counsel. For more information on the position, deadlines and details on how to apply, go to BC Public Service Job Opportunities on the MyHR website.
The Tribunal's Annual Report for fiscal year 2014-2015 was filed with the Clerk of the Legislature on September 22, 2015.
June 3, 2015
The Tribunal invites your feedback in an effort to make the human rights process accessible, timely and fair. In particular, please provide your comments on recent changes to our Rules of Practice and Procedure and Forms by June 30, 2015. See the Registrar's letter for more details regarding our feedback request. You may wish to send your comments via our email address: BCHumanRightsTribunal@gov.bc.ca
May 20, 2015
The definition of retaliation has been expanded. For conduct occurring on or after May 14, 2015, the Human Rights Code protects you from retaliation because you:
March 25, 2015
IMPORTANT NOTICE - As of March 30, 2015, the BC Human Rights Coalition will be known as the BC Human Rights Clinic and their new contact information will be:
Suite 300 – 1140 West Pender Street
Vancouver, BC V6E 4G1
Toll Free: 1-855-685-6222
The BC Human Rights Clinic will continue to conduct their short service clinics every Monday at the Tribunal's location.
February 19, 2015
The Tribunal amended the Settlement Meeting Policy to incorporate the new Agreement to Participate in Mediation, which replaces the Settlement Meeting Agreement.
February 17, 2015
The Tribunal has replaced the Practice Direction Hearing Recording and Transcripts, including a model order for access to audio recordings.
December 9, 2014
The Tribunal has changed the judicial review page so that it now lists only those Tribunal decisions where there has been a court decision on the judicial review application.
November 17, 2014
The Tribunal's Annual Report for fiscal year 2013-2014 was tabled in the Legislature on October 20, 2014.
October 28, 2014
The Tribunal issued new Information Sheets about settling a complaint:
The Tribunal has issued amended Rules, new forms, and has replaced all of its Information Sheets. See:
The Tribunal's policies have been amended to reflect changes in the Rules.
The following practice directions have been withdrawn:
Also see changes to our home page.
February 25, 2014
The Tribunal's Annual Report for fiscal year 2012-2013 was tabled in the Legislature on February 24, 2013.
New Practice Direction : - Hearing RecordingsMarch 4, 2013
The Tribunal's Annual Report for fiscal year 2011-2012 was tabled in the Legislature on February 27, 2013.December 20, 2012
Holiday Hours – The Tribunal will be closed for statutory holidays on December 25, 26, 2012 and January 1, 2013.December 10, 2012
December 10, known as International Human Rights Day, marks the 64th anniversary of the creation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Please follow this link to the United Nations website for detailed information, including a link to the Declaration itself.August 30, 2012
Strike - On August 29, 2012 the BCGEU (BC Government and Service Employees' Union) announced that B.C. government workers across the province will go on strike on Wednesday, September 5, 2012 for one day. Alternate arrangements have been made for hearings and mediations scheduled on September 5. Those affected will be contacted by the Tribunal. Our offices will be open on the day of the strike to receive new complaints and submissions. Telephone inquires made on September 5 will be received by voice mail message and attended to the following day.April 20, 2012
The BC Human Rights Tribunal welcomes Steven Adamson as our new Registrar. Mr. Adamson comes to us from the Workers' Compensation Appeal Tribunal where he worked as a Vice Chair and Deputy Registrar. In his previous role he was instrumental in revising WCAT's website, forms and guides. Prior to that Mr. Adamson was an Appeal Commissioner with the former Worker's Compensation Board Appeal Division. He is looking forward to working with the stakeholders in the BC human rights community.
August 26, 2011
The Tribunal is undertaking a policy and procedural review and is inviting feedback from stakeholders.
The Tribunal's Acting Chair, Bernd Walter, issued a new practice directive.
Public Access to the Complaint File
December 8, 2010
The Tribunal's Acting Chair, Bernd Walter, responded by letter to the BC Law Institute regarding their Workplace Dispute Resolution Project Report to the Ministry of Labour and the Ministry for the Attorney General.
The Tribunal's Acting Chair, Bernd Walter, presented an Information Brief to the BC Law Institute's Workplace Dispute Resolution Consultation. The Tribunal prepared the Information Brief to identify human rights and administrative law principles relevant to law reform in this area, to identify previous reports respecting human rights reform, and to provide information about the Tribunal's processes for consideration in the Law Institute's review process.