What Do Turtles & Service Dogs Have in Common? Tribunal Practice Update

Service dog

Photo: CNIB.ca

Tribunal work involves legislation that affects clients with a wide range of legal issues. Employment, environmental issues, and social justice are just a few of the areas that are handled by dozens of tribunals established by the government. Here are some recent cases and reports from tribunals where paralegals may practice:

  • Autistic girl denied service at restaurant because of her service dog awarded $2,500 as compensation for injury to dignity, feelings, and self-respect – Sweet v. 1790907 Ontario Inc. o/a Kanda Sushi, 2015 HRTO 433 (CanLII)
  • Wind farm case going back to Environmental Review Tribunal; ONCA overturns part of a Divisional Court finding related to irreversible harm to Blanding’s turtles if the Prince Edward County project goes ahead
  • British Columbia’s ODR system for condo and small claims disputes will go live summer. Ontario is following the system, with a mind to move some tribunals online. This is how it works.
  • Disability appeals are on the rise, as reviews and applications keep legal clinics busy
  • Builders, landlords adjust to barrier-free rules
  • LTB has tweaked the new N8 termination notice – details section is now less restrictive
  • In time for Pan-Am Games – Inspection blitz planned for precarious workers, including security guards, fitness & rec centre staff, recreation industry; Internships blitz planned for the fall
  • The Society of Ontario Adjudicators and Regulators (SOAR) has raised the alarm over the future of tribunals in the province. Ontario’s 10-year cap on the overall length of appointments to Ontario’s 17 largest tribunals means we are “a year away from a crisis.”

    Quality and quantity of decisions are at risk, and delays could increase as appointments end. Half the adjudicators could have no experience at all, according to SOAR’s report.

  • Scheduling no shifts for pregnant day-care worker found to be discriminatory; $18,000 for lost wages, code violation – Richards v. 905950 Ontario Ltd. o/a Storybook Childcare Centre, 2015 HRTO 517 (CanLII)
  • Long-delayed coroners’ inquests to reconvene this fall, after regulatory changes encourage Native representation
  • Employment Standards – Ontario has launched a review of the Employment Standards Act and the Labour Relations Act; the Workers Action Centre has released a report as part of the consultations
  • FSCO issues warning to drivers and passengers about Uber-style “ride-sharing” risks
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