Case studies

The Alberta Human Rights Commission receives many complaints about acts of discrimination that contravene the Alberta Human Rights Act. The Act recognizes that all persons are equal in dignity, rights and responsibilities, regardless of race, religious beliefs, colour, gender, physical disability, mental disability, age, ancestry, place of origin, marital status, source of income, family status or sexual orientation.

The Act prohibits discrimination in the following areas:

  • statements, publications, notices, signs, symbols, emblems or other representations that are published, issued or displayed before the public
  • good, services, accommodation or facilities customarily available to the public
  • tenancy
  • employment practices
  • employment applications or advertisements
  • membership in trade unions, employers' organizations, or occupational associations
  • equal pay

The majority of complaints received by the Commission are in the area of employment and are based on the grounds of gender and physical disability. A complaint may cite more than one ground. Many complaints received by the Commission are resolved through conciliation. If conciliation is unsuccessful or if the complainant or respondent declines conciliation, the complaint is investigated. 

The examples of cases on this site illustrate the different areas and grounds of discrimination and demonstrate how cases are handled. Details of actual cases have been changed to protect the identity of the parties involved. The cases studies are organized by the grounds protected under the Act:

For more information, please contact the Alberta Human Rights Commission.

Revised: April 11, 2017



The Alberta Human Rights Commission is an independent commission of the Government of Alberta.

Due to confidentiality concerns, the Commission cannot reply to inquiries about specific situations by email. Please call the Commission's Confidential Inquiry Line if you have a specific question.

You can access information about making FOIP requests for records held by the Commission on our Contact us page.

The Commission will make publications available in accessible formats upon request for people with disabilities who do not read conventional print.