i) In a preliminary decision, the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario (the “HRTO”) recently found that a miscarriage constitutes a disability for the purpose of the Ontario Human Rights Code (the “Code”). The HRTO noted that an employee’s condition was not required to be permanent to be considered a disability. The HRTO found that a miscarriage was not a common ailment and was not transitory and, therefore, met the definition of a disability under the Code.
ii) The Superior Court of Ontario recently awarded damages to an employer for a claim of wrongful resignation brought against two former employees. The employees at issue were responsible for a large proportion of the employer’s sales. The employees did not provide the employer with any notice of resignation. The employer struggled to find qualified salespersons to take the place of the two departed employees and sales were negatively impacted as a result. The Court found that the employees should have provided the employer with two (2) months’ notice of resignation and awarded lost revenue to the employer for the two (2) month period.
iii) The British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal (the “BCHRT”) recently awarded damages to an unqualified job applicant after finding that the applicant’s religious beliefs were a factor in the decision not to hire the applicant, even though the applicant was otherwise unqualified. The applicant responded to a job advertisement with the employer. In response to her application, the employer responded by stating that the applicant did not meet the minimum requirements for the job. However, the employer also stated that because the applicant had attended a certain Christian-based university, it did not feel that her beliefs matched those of the company. The applicant filed a complaint with the BCHRT alleging that she had been denied an employment opportunity because of her religion. The BCHRT found that although the applicant was not qualified for the position, the employer had discriminated against the applicant on the basis of her presumed religious beliefs. The applicant was awarded $8,500 in general damages.