Ms. Shiozaki has no reasonable prospect of proving discrimination against non-Aboriginals working for the Aboriginal Mother Centre Society, therefore the complaint is dismissed.
Ms. Shiozaki worked for the Aboriginal Mother Centre Society [“Society”] for about three months before being placed on administrative leave and eventually fired. She identified as “Japanese in origin”. Ms. Shiozaki alleged the President of the Society’s Board of Directors held discriminatory attitudes towards non-Aboriginal people and thought that only Aboriginal people should be working for the Society. She said her race, ancestry, and colour, as well as disability were factors in her negative treatment by the Respondents. The Society denied discriminating. They say that they never treated Ms. Shiozaki adversely because of characteristics protected by the Human Rights Code. Her employment was terminated because she committed fraud and breach of trust and bullied other employees.
The decision addressed three issues: 1) Ms. Shiozaki’s request for further document disclosure; 2) the Respondents’ application for dismissal; and 3) Ms. Shiozaki’s application for costs arising out of what she argues was improper conduct by the Respondents in the course of this complaint.
Ms. Shiozaki said the Respondents failed to comply with an earlier Tribunal order respecting seven categories of documents. The Respondents produced all documents ordered by the Tribunal. They were not required to create and produce affidavits about issues in contention, nor were they required to disclose documents protected by solicitor-client privilege. Therefore Ms. Shiozaki’s request for further orders respecting disclosure was denied.
There was no evidence to suggest that, generally speaking, the Society was an organization that favoured the interests of its Aboriginal staff. Because she felt she had been treated unfairly, her race must have been a part of that. Further, because she was on medical leave when a number of adverse decisions were made, that must have amounted to discrimination based on disability. This revealed a deep misunderstanding about discrimination and the context of Aboriginal people in Canada. This extended to the functioning of the Society itself, where Ms. Shiozaki argued the Society was engaging in discrimination by only providing services to Aboriginal mothers. The argument is further belied by the fact that the person hired to replace Ms. Shiozaki was not Aboriginal. Any connection between the Respondent’s conduct and Ms. Shiozaki’s protected characteristics was purely conjecture. The Respondent’s conduct was supported by sworn affidavits and documentary evidence. This complaint had no reasonable prospect of success and therefore dismissed.
Ms. Shiozaki argued that the Respondents engaged in improper conduct by using documents they obtained in the course of this complaint to fight her application for EI benefits. As the documents were all in the Society’s possession independently of this process, the Society was entitled to use them in other proceedings. The two pieces of information Ms. Shiozaki argued the Society had acted improperly on were not confidential to this process and therefore, there was no evidence the Respondents acted improperly in the course of this complaint and the application for costs was denied.