Scope of Policy
This policy describes the information we collect in the complaint process under the Human Rights Code, and how we use that information.
Personal information means information that identifies an individual and is recorded. Personal information includes things such as an individual’s name, address, birth date, e-mail address and phone number.
Collection of Personal Information
The Tribunal is responsible for receiving and processing human rights complaints under the Human Rights Code. The Tribunal collects and uses personal information to process complaints. The Tribunal also collects and uses contact information to conduct surveys to evaluate and improve its services under s. 59.1 of the Administrative Tribunals Act.
Disclosure of Information
Rule 5 of the Tribunal’s Rules of Practice and Procedure sets out the rules regarding public access to the complaint file and process.
Information is shared with the parties
The information in the complaint file is shared with the parties to the complaint. You can tell the Tribunal not to share your phone number or email address with the parties. However, you must share an address where parties can deliver documents to you.
The Tribunal collects demographic information on a voluntary basis. This information is confidential. It is not shared with the parties. It may be shared with the Office of the Human Rights Commissioner on a confidential basis.
The mediation process is private and confidential. This means that only the parties and mediator know what happened in the mediation. The Mediation Policy sets out exceptions. This process allows parties to meet with a mediator to resolve a complaint privately.
The Tribunal must make its decisions accessible to the public (s. 50(4) of the Administrative Tribunals Act). The Tribunal puts most of its decisions on its website.
The Tribunal may make decisions about many types of questions during a complaint process. For example, the Tribunal may decide whether to:
- accept a late-filed complaint for filing
- defer a complaint
- add a respondent to a complaint
- order a party to share documents
- dismiss a complaint without a hearing
The Tribunal puts on its website a list of the complaints that have a hearing set in the next 90 days. The hearing list includes:
- the names of the parties
- the case number
- areas and grounds of discrimination
- place and date of hearing
The Tribunal’s file about a complaint is not available to the public, except if a complaint is on the hearing list. Then, the following documents are available to the public:
- complaint form
- response to complaint form
- amendment forms
- Tribunal notices about the hearing
- preliminary decisions
Addresses and personal contact information stay private.
The public can attend a hearing. The public may ask to see evidence received during a hearing. The public does not generally have access to recordings or transcripts of a hearing. See the Public Access & Media Policy.
Office of the Human Rights Commissioner
The Tribunal must give copies of complaints and responses to the Office of the Human Rights Commissioner. The Tribunal may provide the Commissioner with other records in a complaint file.
Access to Information Requests
A person can make a request for access to other information about a complaint under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. The request must be made in writing to the Registrar. The Tribunal will tell you if it plans to give someone a copy of a document that may be harmful to your personal privacy.
You can ask the Tribunal to limit the information it makes public. You can also ask the Tribunal to order a publication ban. Use a Form 7.1 General Application to apply. For more information, see how to apply to limit publication of personal information on the Tribunal website.
The Tribunal accepts complaints by email and uses email to communicate with participants who give us their email address. When you choose to communicate by email, you should consider that email communications are generally less secure than other methods, such as mail, fax, or hand delivery.
How to contact us or make a privacy complaint
If you have questions about this policy, or if you have concerns about a specific situation, or want to make a complaint about a breach of privacy, you can contact the Registrar by phone, email, or mail:
British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal
1270 – 605 Robson Street
Vancouver, B.C. V6B 5J3