About the Commission

Our work

The Canadian Human Rights Commission is Canada’s human rights watchdog. We work for the people of Canada and operate independently from the Government.

The Commission helps ensure that everyone in Canada is treated fairly, no matter who they are.

We are responsible for representing the public interest and holding the Government of Canada to account on matters related to human rights.

Our work is guided by the Canadian Human Rights Act, which gives the Commission the authority to research, raise awareness, and speak out on any matter related to human rights in Canada. The Commission is responsible for administering the Act, which protects people in Canada from discrimination when based on any of the grounds of discrimination such as race, sex and disability.

The Commission receives human rights complaints and works with both the complainant and respondent to resolve the issues through mediation. When a complaint cannot be settled, or when the Commission decides that further examination is warranted, it may refer the complaint to the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal for a decision.

The Commission also works with federally regulated employers to ensure compliance with the Employment Equity Act. This contributes to the elimination of employment barriers in various workplaces for women, Indigenous peoples, people with disabilities and racialized groups.Note 1

Footnote 1

The Employment Equity Act uses the term “visible minorities.” The Commission is of the view that this is an antiquated term. The Commission is using the term “racialized groups” in the interim.

Return to footnote 1 referrer

Our people

The Commission operates across Canada with a team of over 220 people and is led by Chief Commissioner Marie-Claude Landry.


In 2019, the Commission’s executive team comprised Deputy Chief Commissioner Geneviève Chabot, full-time Commissioner Edith Bramwell, and part-time Commissioners Joanna Harrington, Rachel Leck, and Dianna Scarth.

In October 2019, Canada’s first Federal Pay Equity Commissioner, Karen Jensen, was appointed by Governor in Council and joined the Canadian Human Rights Commission with the specific responsibility of administering and enforcing Parliament’s new Pay Equity Act once it comes into force.

Group photo of Commissioners, with names listed in caption below 1. Joanna Harrington 2. Geneviève Chabot 3. Edith Bramwell 4. Karen Jensen 5. Rachel Leck 6. Dianne Scarth 7. Marie-Claude Landry