Fifteen years after it was dismantled, the new British Columbia government has announced it will reinstate the B.C. Human Rights Commission, which has traditionally had an educational and advocacy role, and through which cases heading for the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal are funnelled. And that could be a blessing, though a mixed one, for lawyers who deal with human-rights complaints.
“There are pros and cons” to the reinstatement, says Sara Forte, an employment lawyer at Forte Law Corporation in Surrey, B.C. whose practice includes workplace human rights.
On the minus side, Forte told Legal Feeds, “When the Commission existed before, until 2002, one of the main criticisms was delay” in cases being heard; “so, the concern was that reinstating the Commission might mean a longer process to have complaints get to a hearing.”