FAQs about Employment Equity

  • Is it a human rights concern?

    It may be a human rights concern if you have experienced harassment or discrimination because of a Prohibited ground under the Human Rights Code

  • What are the human rights grounds?

    race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, record of offences, marital status, family status, and disability.

  • When is it not a human rights concern?

    When the harassment does not fall under any of the prohibited grounds.

  • What Should I Do If I Feel that I Have a Human Rights Concern?

    Contact DHR immediately by calling x53000 or sending an email to dhrinfo@uoguelph.ca 

    An experienced staff will explore with you the three processes prescribed under UofG Human Rights Policy.

  • What Is the Informal Process?

    The Informal Process is the most commonly utilized approach to resolving human rights complaints at the University of Guelph. There are four options for resolving a complaint on this basis. 

    • Option1: Discussion of the concern between the parties.
    • Option 2: With the assistance of a person with supervisory responsibilities, inform the respondent of the concern and of the Policy and Procedures.
    • Option 3: Provide third-party assistance through the Office of Diversity and Human Rights (DHR).
    • Option 4: Person with supervisory responsibilities may conduct an informal inquiry into the concern.

    Time: Typically up to 15 working days or less.

    Outcome: Issue can be resolved quickly and confidentially.

    Records: the  DHR will keep a record of the resolution and shall monitor the implementation of any resolution and shall ensure that those involved with the matter are kept fully informed.

  • What is Mediation?

    Mediation Process.

    • Where alleged harassment is the basis of a dispute, mediation involves a third party acting as a facilitator in direct communication between the two disputants.
    • Where systemic discrimination or a failure to accommodate is alleged, the parties to mediation may include the individual disputing the policy, practice or procedure, as well as a person(s) with supervisory responsibilities in the matter.
    • Mediation is voluntary, and will only be used when all parties to a complaint agree.
    • Mediation can be a practical way to help all sides to a complaint understand the other party’s or parties’ position and allows all parties to be involved directly in the process.
    • Mediation is not a fact-finding process, nor will the mediator make any decision about the resolution of a complaint.
    • Any settlement or resolution must be mutually accepted by the parties to the mediation and approved by the Office of Diversity and Human Rights and by those persons with supervisory responsibilities who bear responsibility for implementing or monitoring the terms of the agreement.
    • The Office of Diversity and Human Rights will keep a record of the resolution and shall monitor the implementation of any settlement or resolution reached and shall ensure that those involved with the matter are kept fully informed.
  • What is the Formal Process?

    Formal Process

    To initiate a formal complaint, the complainant must complete, sign and date the formal complaint form and file it with the Office of Diversity and Human Rights within one year of the most recent alleged discriminatory or harassing behavior.

    • This time limit may be extended where the complainant’s delay was incurred in good faith and no substantial prejudice will result to any person affected by the delay.
    • Usually, it will be the individual or group affected by the alleged discrimination or harassment who will file a formal complaint.
    • A formal complaint may also be made by persons representing the complainant(s). In all cases, the formal complaint form will be forwarded to the Office of Diversity and Human Rights.
    • A person(s) with supervisory responsibilities who receives a formal human rights complaint on the prescribed form will retain a copy and forward the original of the complaint to the Office of Diversity and Human Rights (DHR).
    • On receiving a formal complaint, the Director of DHR will review the formal complaint to determine if: (i) the University has jurisdiction; (ii) the allegations(s) is (are) based on a prohibited ground; (iii) the most recent alleged incident occurred within the past one year; (iv) there are any safety or health concerns that require immediate action.

    For complete information about the next steps in the formal complaint process, please consult Human Rights at the University of Guelph or contact the DHR.

  • I have a concern, but I'm not sure if it's based on a prohibited ground. What should I do?

    If you are unsure, DHR staff can help you determine this.

    They may then refer you to either one of the following relevant offices;

    • Human Resources and or your employee group
    • Faculty and Academic Staff Relations Office and or UGFA
    • Judicial Office
    • Residence Judicial Office
    • Student Affairs
    • Campus Police

    If you have immediate concerns for your personal safety, you should always contact campus police (x20000) or your local police.

  • Can I Contact the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal (HRTO) directly?

    Yes you can. However, please note that both the Canadian and the Ontario Human Rights Tribunals will expect that you first try to resolve the issue where it took place –ie. on campus using internal processes.

  • My friend/colleague is being discriminated against, what should I do?

    Contact the DHR

    Contact your Supervisor

    Contact your Residence Assistant

    Contact Campus Police