Human Rights & Duties


I was retaliated against

These case summaries show examples of the awards the Tribunal has made when a person has suffered injury to their dignity and self-respect because of discrimination. The summaries also show what other awards were made, like compensation for lost wages or other expenses.

Macklem v. Cambie Malone’s, 2014 BCHRT 56 ($1,000)

Area:              Retaliation
Grounds:       N/A
Retaliation:    Fired

The discrimination:   Ms. Macklem filed a human rights complaint. Shortly after, she was fired. The main reason that she was fired was the human rights complaint.

Vulnerability:  None identified.

Effect:  There was no evidence of any negative effect on Ms. Macklem. The Tribunal assumed that there was some negative effect from the fact that she lost her job because of retaliation.

Steele v. Aishwarya Investments and another, 2014 BCHRT 192 (individual respondent – $1,000 and corporate respondent – $2,500)

Area:               Retaliation     
Grounds:        N/A
Retaliation:    Filing a lawsuit

The discrimination:   Mr. Steele filed a human rights complaint after he was evicted by his landlord. Less than two months later, the landlord sued him in court. In the lawsuit, the landlord tried to smear Mr. Steel’s character. The lawsuit was retaliation for the human rights complaint.

Vulnerability:  None identified.

Effect:  Mr. Steele did not have a lot of money. Having a lawsuit brought against him would create stress. The stress was short because the landlord did not take any more steps to pursue the lawsuit. The corporate landlord was ordered to pay $2,500. The property manager, who had recommended filing the lawsuit, was ordered to pay $1,000.

Cartwright v. Rona and another, 2011 BCHRT 65  (Retaliation – $4,000 and employment – $4,000)

Area:               Retaliation and employment 
Grounds:        Physical disability
Retaliation:     Public humiliation

The discrimination:   Mr. Cartwright lost his job because his employer perceived he had a physical disability. He filed a human rights complaint. When he went to the employer to give his witness list and do other hearing preparation, the employer yelled and swore at him. It threatened to call the police and escorted him off the property in a public and humiliating way. The Tribunal found this treatment was “egregious”.

Vulnerability:  Mr. Cartwright was young and had only recently started working. The employer was older and had more authority.

Effect: Mr. Cartwright was shocked, upset and humiliated by his treatment, especially because it was so public.

Pathak v. City of Vancouver and another, 2012 BCHRT 195 ($5,000)

Area:               Retaliation     
Grounds:        N/A
Retaliation:    Five day suspension

The discrimination:   Mr. Pathak filed a human rights complaint. After that, the employer started investigating allegations of workplace misconduct. The supervisor who was investigating was overly aggressive. He assumed Mr. Pathak was lying. He made disrespectful comments putting Mr. Pathak down. He showed animosity toward Mr. Pathak. The employer suspended Mr. Pathak for five days. This did not match the offence. The aggressive approach to investigating and disciplining Mr. Pathak was to punish him for filing a complaint.

Vulnerability:  None identified.

Effect:  Mr. Pathak was humiliated. The situation was painful for him. It affected his relationship with his wife. He could not sleep and needed sleeping pills. He continued to feel sadness.

Q v. Wild Log Homes and another, 2012 BCHRT 135 (sexual harassment – $7,500 and retaliation -$8,000)

Area:                           Retaliation
Grounds:                    N/A
Discrimination:          Intimidation, law suit

The discrimination:   Q worked for Mr. Walker. She filed a human rights complaint against him based on sexual harassment. Mr. Walker tried to intimidate her. He was overly aggressive, disruptive and disrespectful during the hearing process.  He also sued her in B.C. Supreme Court for the money spent to defend the complaint. He filed over 50 applications in court that Q had to deal with.

Vulnerability:  Q was vulnerable because she did not want to lose her job. She lived alone and needed a pay cheque.

Effect:    The harassment and retaliation had a major psychological effect on Q.  Q felt that Mr. Walker was using the legal system to stalk her. She was terrified of him. She was reminded of the sexual harassment and could not put it behind her. She said she had anxiety, depression and panic attacks. She was very upset throughout the proceedings. She was overwhelmed and exhausted. Although Q did not submit any medical evidence, the Tribunal accepted that the emotional impact on Q was significant and ongoing. 

The Tribunal awarded Q $8,000 for the retaliation.