Founded in 1983 - United for Diversity and Racial Equality

SECOND QUARTERLY CASE REVIEW: MORE THAN $30,000 IN SETTLEMENTS FOR VICTIMS, 41 NEW CASES


SETTLEMENTS

From April to June 2010, CRARR helped discrimination victims obtain settlements amounting to more than $30,000 in compensation and non-monetary remedies. The following are a few examples:

  • A Black man who worked in the construction industry and who was exposed to racial harassment in the workplace then unjustly fired received $15,000 in compensation;
  • A bi-racial couple abusively stopped by private security guards in an entertainment complex and wrongly accused of misconduct received a financial settlement and complimentary tickets. The company also pledged to destroy all personal information collected from the couple without their consent;
  • A disabled, White, Anglophone woman, expelled from a library due to language miscommunication with Francophone staff and her hearing capacity, obtained a settlement and authorization to return to the library to complete her research;
  • A Black man experiencing harassment in employment a financial service institution obtained a settlement in exchange for the withdrawing his other civil rights and professional misconduct complaints filed against the company and a staff person.
  • SUCCESSFUL ACTIONS

    All requests for assistance do not necessarily lead CRARR taking to legal or administrative actions. In many cases, an informal intervention results in total or partial victory for CRARR’s clients in terms of achieving the desired goal. For instance:

  • A South Shore elderly Asian sought CRARR’s help to send to his neighbor a notice to cease and decist from encroaching upon his private property with a new fence built without the Asian man’s consent. After ignoring his plea for days, the neighbor changed his tone and fence building after receiving the notice;
  • Two racialized women who were excessively and injustifiably physically roughed up and fined by municipal authorities obtained help from CRARR to file complaints and saw their tickets cancelled by the City prosecution; their civil rights complaints, however, continue.

  • INCREASE IN COMPLAINTS

    In the second quarter of 2010, CRARR experienced a major increase in the number of complaints of racial discrimination. These cases occur in employment, public and private security, public transit and secondary and post-secondary education. CRARR opened 56 new files, leading to 41 formal interventions: 19 complaints were filed with the Quebec human rights commission; 8 with the Police Ethics Commissioner and 1 with the labor standards commission. Thirteen (13) other actions were undertaken, with other administrative and common-law tribunals or with public agencies. In 2009, there were 42 files open during the second quarter of the year.

    Police relations and employment ranked at the top of sectors where CRARR is called upon to intervene, representing respectively 39% and 24% of all new files open.

    Most employment cases involved Arab men as victims while almost 90% of police racism cases involved Black men.

    The most common motive for civil rights violations is race and ethnicity, representing 86% of all cases; the rest of other new cases deal with age, sexual orientation, social condition (poverty) or disability.

    Blacks and Asians (including South Asians and Pacific Asians) represent the largest group of victims (57% and 13% respectively), followed by Whites and Middle Easterners (the latter being mostly persons of Arabic descent, 11% for each group). English-speaking people continue to comprise 64% of CRARR’s new clients, which may indicate this group’s heightened awareness of civil rights and vigilance against discrimination.

    Males constitute 59% of all new clients. Those between 30 and 45 years of age made up 43% of all new clients, followed by those between 18 and 29, at 23%. Minors, almost all of whom are English-speaking Blacks, represented 14% of new clients.

    Additionally, CRARR’s lawyers provided legal representation to 6 new clients in separate criminal and civil proceedings where equality is a key component.

    During this period, CRARR filed briefs with the Quebec Human Rights Tribunal in two race-discrimination cases. CRARR also created a national coalition of equality-seeking groups to support a racialized lawyer who took legal action against the federal government before the Public Service Staffing Tribunal for systemic racism in employment. Finally, CRARR began to examine systemic racism in housing, especially where social housing is concerned, as well as systemic racism in public transit in general, especially where the practice of checking metro riders for proof of fare payment is involved.

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