Governing Legislation and Resources for Human Rights (6:II)

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This information applies to British Columbia, Canada. Last reviewed for legal accuracy by the Law Students' Legal Advice Program on June 18, 2021.

A. Legislation

Human Rights Code, RSBC 1996, c 210, as amended [HRC]

Canadian Human Rights Act, RSC 1985, c H-6, as amended [CHRA]

Civil Rights Protection Act, RSBC 1996, c 49 [CRPA].

B. Resources

B.C. Human Rights Tribunal

An independent, quasi-judicial body created by the BC Human Rights Code, responsible for accepting, screening, mediating and adjudicating provincial human rights complaints. The website is very helpful. Their Guides and Information Sheets provide thorough procedural information in English, Chinese, and Punjabi. The Tribunal’s decisions dating back to 1997 are available online through the BC HRT website, and are also available on CanLII BC.

Online Website
Address 1270 - 605 Robson Street
Vancouver, B.C., V6B 5J3
Phone (604) 775-2000
TTY: (604) 775-2021
Toll-free in B.C.: 1-888-440-8844
Fax: (604) 775-2020

The B.C. Human Rights Clinic

The BC Human Rights Clinic is operated by the Community Legal Assistance Society (CLAS) and is funded by the BC Ministry of Justice. The Clinic provides free legal representation to low-income claimants or those unable to represent themselves before the BC Human Rights Tribunal due to lack of capacity or disability. It also provides a free short service Drop-In Clinic on Mondays between 9:30am and 4:00pm.

Online Website
Address 300 – 1140 West Pender Street
Vancouver, B.C., V6E 4G1
Phone (604) 622-1100
Toll-free in Canada: 1-855-685-6222
Fax: (604) 685-7611

The B.C. Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA)

If the client’s legal issue also extends to Charter rights, the BCCLA may provide assistance.

Online Website
Address 550 - 1188 West Georgia Street
Vancouver, B.C. V6E 4A2
Phone (604) 630-9748
Fax: (604) 687-3045

The Canadian Human Rights Commission

Online Website

Western Region

Address Canada Place, Suite 1645, 9700 Jasper Avenue
P.O. Box 21, Edmonton, Alberta T5J 4C3
Phone (780) 495-4040
Toll-Free: 1-888-214-1090
TTY: 1-888-643-3304
Fax: (780) 495-4044

National Office

Address 344 Slater Street, 8th Floor
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 1E1
Phone (613) 995-1151
Toll-free: 1-888-214-1090
6-2 TTY: 1-888-643-3304
Fax: (613) 996-9661

The Commission can independently initiate federal human rights complaints, but normally assists in their drafting and investigates complaints lodged by individuals or organizations. If insufficient evidence of discrimination is presented, the Commission can dismiss the complaint. If the Commission finds that the allegations of discrimination warrant mediation or adjudication, it can refer the case to conciliation or to the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal for a hearing.

The BC Office of the Human Rights Commissioner

The Human Rights Code Amendment Act recently re-established a Human Rights Commission in British Columbia. The province’s original human rights commission was dismantled in 2002. Kasari Govender was appointed as BC’s first Independent Human Rights Commissioner on September 3, 2019. The Commission will promote human rights, undertake research, and offer public education and outreach. It will also examine human rights implications of any policy, program or legislation and make recommendations if aspects of policy, programs or legislation are inconsistent with the Human Rights Code. Finally, although the Commission will not have the power to file human rights complaints, it will have the power to intervene in complaints before the Human Rights Tribunal. See s 47.12 of the BC Human Rights Code for a full list of the commissioner’s powers.

Online E-mail:
Address #750, 999 Canada Place
Vancouver, B.C. V6C 3E1
Phone 1-844-922-6472 (voicemail box)

© Copyright 2021, The Greater Vancouver Law Students' Legal Advice Society.