Sheridan College discrimination complaint thrown out

The Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario has dismissed a complaint from a mature student against Sheridan College over allegations of discrimination.

Accounting student AiLan Ou alleged she was discriminated against by the college in March 2011 because of her age and ethnic origin.

However, in a recent decision, adjudicator Keith Brennenstuhl dismissed the application on the basis of “no reasonable prospect of success” due to lack of credibility and concerns about the reliability of Ou’s evidence.

The case centered around a business communications course that involved comments on an online discussion board and a team project. Ou’s multiple comments disparaging Muslims and Islam and refusal to work with other members of her team raised the concern of the Sheridan accounting professor Sarah Carter.

This eventually led to a meeting with Sheridan’s student rights and responsibility officer Sunand Sharma.

Brennenstuhl also said Ou actions throughout the proceedings were fundamentally disrespectful of the Tribunal. “The applicant has repeatedly refused to comply with express instructions,” he wrote in court documents, “And she had engaged in discourteous behaviour.”

During proceedings that ended in mid January, Ou also alleged Carter committed perjury, a criminal charge. However, Brennenstuhl noted the matter is not within the Tribunal’s jurisdiction and that Ou failed to provide credible evidence to support “this extremely serious allegation.”



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