What if I’m not hired because an employer discriminates against me?

3. Learn more about making a human rights claim

If you think an employer didn't hire you for a reason that goes against your human rights, you can apply to the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario.

The Tribunal can decide if an employer has discriminated against you. You start the process by making an application to the Tribunal.

What the Tribunal can do

If the Tribunal decides that your employer broke the law, they can order that the employer:

  • pay you money
  • give you a job
  • change its hiring practices so they follow human rights laws

You can ask for money to cover costs that you had or to replace money that you were forced to spend because of what the employer did.

You can also ask for money because of how the employer's actions affected you. When an employer does not respect your human rights, this can hurt you. The Tribunal can order the employer to pay you money for the hurt they caused you. You don't have to show that their actions cost you money.

What to say in your application

In your application, you say:

  • what happened
  • why you think the employer's decision is against your human rights

For example, an employer's decision is against human rights laws if:

  • they won't hire a woman because she's pregnant
  • they won't hire anyone who speaks English with an accent that's not Canadian
  • they refuse to consider making any changes to the workplace for someone in a wheelchair
  • they won't consider anyone who wears a hijab or other type of head covering

Sometimes employers won't say why you didn't get the job. But you might have other evidence that shows why they didn't hire you, such as:

  • questions that they asked you
  • rules that the employer applies to everyone even if they go against someone's human rights

For example, an employer might say they have rules about wearing a uniform. But you might need to wear something different because of your religious beliefs.

Time limits

The deadline to apply to the Tribunal is one year from the date you were discriminated against.

If you miss the deadline, you can still apply. But in your application, you need to explain why you're applying late. If you have a good reason, for example, you couldn't apply because you were in the hospital, the Tribunal can decide to let you apply late.

Learn more about starting a claim at the Tribunal in How to complete an Application form to the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario.

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