Economic Development Edmonton v. Baah et al., 2003 ABQB 721

Judge:Park, J.
Court:Court of Queen's Bench of Alberta
Case Date:August 22, 2003
Jurisdiction:Alberta
Citations:2003 ABQB 721;(2003), 336 A.R. 280 (QB)
 
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EDE v. Baah (2003), 336 A.R. 280 (QB)

MLB headnote and full text

Temp. Cite: [2003] A.R. TBEd. SE.014

In the Matter of the Decision of the Chief Commissioner of the Alberta Human Rights and Citizenship Commission Made on August 1, 2002 Concluding that the Director should not have dismissed the Complaint Asare Baah Filed on March 19, 2001 Against Economic Development Edmonton

Economic Development Edmonton (applicant) v. Asare Baah and the Chief Commissioner of the Alberta Human Rights and Citizenship Commission

(Action No. 0203 15783; 2003 ABQB 721)

Indexed as: Economic Development Edmonton v. Baah et al.

Alberta Court of Queen's Bench

Judicial District of Edmonton

Park, J.

August 22, 2003.

Summary:

Baah was dismissed with cause from his employment with Economic Development Edmonton. Baah signed an Acceptance and Release. Baah filed a complaint with the Alberta Human Rights and Citizenship Commission. An investigator concluded that the claim was without merit. Baah submitted a request for review. The Chief Commissioner held that the claim should not have been dismissed and directed the claim to a panel. Economic Development Edmonton applied for judicial review.

The Alberta Court of Queen's Bench dismissed the application.

Editor's Note: Certain names in the following case have been initialized or the case otherwise edited to prevent the disclosure of identities where required by law, publication ban, Maritime Law Book's editorial policy or otherwise.

Civil Rights - Topic 7044

Federal or provincial legislation - General -Role of investigator - The Alberta Court of Queen's Bench held that the role of an Alberta Human Rights and Citizenship Commission investigator was only to gather the facts and to make a recommendation as to whether or not the facts warranted a hearing - Weighing the facts and determining the merit of a claim was the role of the gatekeeper, i.e., the director or chief commissioner - See paragraph 29.

Civil Rights - Topic 7044.2

Federal or provincial legislation - General -Role of Director - [See Civil Rights - Topic 7044 ].

Civil Rights - Topic 7106

Federal or provincial legislation - Practice - Settlements and releases - Baah was dismissed from his employment with Economic Development Edmonton (EDE) - Baah signed an Acceptance and Release - Baah filed a complaint with the Alberta Human Rights and Citizenship Commission - An investigator concluded that the claim was without merit - Baah submitted a request for review - The Chief Commissioner held that the claim should not have been dismissed - EDE applied for judicial review, arguing that Baah had executed a valid release which relieved EDE from any obligations arising from Baah's employment - The Alberta Court of Queen's Bench held that the validity of the release was in issue - The court directed that the panel determine the validity of the release before determining the merit of the claim - Further, the court noted that the release dealt with economic liability, not liability respecting human rights legislation or alleged discrimination - See paragraphs 47 to 62.

Cases Noticed:

Chow v. Mobil Oil Canada (1999), 248 A.R. 372; 72 Alta. L.R.(3d) 108 (Q.B.), refd to. [para. 12].

Mis v. Human Rights and Citizenship Commission (Alta.) (2002), 326 A.R. 99 (Q.B.), refd to. [para. 32].

Mis v. Human Rights and Citizenship Commission (Alta.) (2001), 293 A.R. 391; 257 W.A.C. 391 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 33].

Syndicat des employées de production du Québec et de l'Acadie v. Canadian Human Rights Commissioner and Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and the Attorney General of Canada (1990), 2 C.H.R.R. D/1, refd to. [para. 42].

Pushpanathan v. Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration), [1998] 1 S.C.R. 982, addendum [1998] 1 S.C.R. 1222; 226 N.R. 201, refd to. [para. 43].

Counsel:

Thomas Wakeling, Q.C., for the applicant.

Audrey Dean, for the respondent, Alberta Human Rights and Citizenship Commission.

John Carpenter, for the respondent, Asare Baah.

This application was heard by Park, J., of the Alberta Court of Queen's Bench, Judicial District of Edmonton, who delivered the following reasons for judgment on August 22, 2003.

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