Statements, publications, notices, signs, symbols, emblems or other representations: Who can make a complaint

A person or class of persons could experience discrimination in the area of statements:

  • when they see or hear a statement that is discriminatory, or shows an intention to discriminate based on the protected grounds; or
  • when a statement is likely to expose an individual covered under the Alberta Human Rights Act to hatred or contempt.

Section 20 of the AHR Act sets out who can make a complaint of discrimination under the AHR Act as follows:

20(1) any person, except the Commission, a member of the Commission and a person referred to in section 18, who has reasonable grounds for believing that a person has contravened this Act may make a complaint to the Commission.

(2) A complaint made pursuant to subsection (1) must

(a) be in a form acceptable to the Commission, and

(b) be made within one year after the alleged contravention of the Act occurs.

This means a person can make a human rights complaint if they have a reasonable basis to believe that someone has discriminated against them. A complaint may be made on behalf of another individual. Complainants are entitled (but not required) to have a third party, for example, a lawyer or advocate, represent them in the complaint process. If a complainant chooses to pay for help from a lawyer or advocate, the complainant is responsible for the cost.

For more information, see Making and resolving human rights complaints.

Revised: March 10, 2010



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

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