Saturday, April 17, 2010

Ontario Human Rights Tribunal "Overwhelmed" With Cases: Toronto Star

The Toronto Star's Moira Welsh looks at the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal, nearly two years after the implementation of sweeping procedural changes in the adjudication of human rights complaints in the Province:

The new system was created to clear away a massive backlog. Prior to June 2008, human rights complaints were vetted by the Ontario Human Rights Commission, which would decide which cases would be sent to the tribunal for hearing. It took years to investigate complaints and decide whether to pass them on to hearings or mediation.
In 2009, the tribunal received 3,400 new cases, a jump of more than 1,000 from the old system.
...Under the old system, there would be a final decision in only 15 hearings a year. Now, the tribunal is issuing decisions at least 15 times each month.

See: Complaints overwhelm human rights watchdog, which includes discussion of a number of recent Tribunal decisions.

I'll note that this article doesn't include much evidence to support its claim that the Tribunal itself is "overwhelmed" or otherwise unable to handle its increasing case load, but hyperbolic headline aside, it's still well worth reading.

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