Administrative law – Decisions of administrative tribunals – Human Rights Commission – Human Rights complaints – Discrimination – Employment law – Appointment – Judicial review – Evidence – Standard of review – Reasonableness simpliciter – Correctness – Stare decisis
Ayangma v Prince Edward Island (Human Rights Commission),  P.E.I.J. No. 33, 2014 PECA 13, Prince Edward Island Court of Appeal, July 18, 2014, D.H. Jenkins C.J.P.E.I., M.M. Murphy J.A. and N.L. Key J.
The Appellant (Mr. Ayangma) applied for a job with the Respondent, Canada Health Infoway Inc. Mr. Ayangma was interviewed by Mr. John Burns of Infoway. Mr. Burns found that Mr. Ayangma was not qualified for the position. Mr. Burns found another candidate to be qualified and Infoway hired him. Mr. Ayangma is a black man and the other candidate is a Caucasian man.
Mr. Ayangma filed a complaint with the PEI Human Rights Commission (the “Commission”) alleging that he was discriminated against on the basis of his colour, and ethnic or national origin. A panel of the Commission heard evidence from the parties and ultimately accepted that Infoway did not hire Mr. Ayangma because he was not qualified for the position. The panel did however criticize some aspects of Infoway’s hiring process.
Mr. Ayangma then applied to the PEI Supreme Court for judicial review of the panel’s decision. Mr. Ayangma argued that the panel had not followed a relevant precedent case indicating that a flawed hiring process always results in a finding of discrimination. He also argued that the panel should have inferred discrimination. The Supreme Court Judge rejected Mr. Ayangma’s application for judicial review.
Mr. Ayangma next appealed from the Supreme Court decision. The Court of Appeal held that the Judge applied the correct standard of review. The Court also held the doctrine of stare decisis would not apply. The Court of Appeal also held that the Judge did not make any reviewable error and his decision was sustainable.
The Court of Appeal dismissed Mr. Ayangma’s appeal. The Court of Appeal did not make any order for costs because Infoway withdrew its claim for costs.
This case was digested by Scott J. Marcinkow of Harper Grey LLP. If you would like to discuss this case further, please feel free to contact him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or review his biography at http://www.harpergrey.com.
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