Former University of British Columbia student Stephanie Hale, 22. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff Bassett

Former University of British Columbia student Stephanie Hale, 22. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff Bassett

Human Rights Tribunal to hear complaint against UBC Okanagan for ‘mishandling’ sexual assault report

Stephanie Hale did not return to campus after the student she alleges attacked her was cleared of wrongdoing

A B.C. Human Rights Tribunal hearing is set to start Monday after the B.C. Supreme Court recently dismissed a petition to prevent it from deciding on a complaint from a former student at the University of British Columbia.

The university’s Okanagan campus had sought to stop the tribunal from hearing the complaint filed by Stephanie Hale, who alleges the school mishandled her report of sexual assault by another student in 2013.

The other student has denied the allegation, saying what happened was consensual.

The tribunal had agreed to hear part of Hale’s complaint for an alleged contravention of the Human Rights Code between February 2016 and March 2017, when she was going through the university’s process for handling reports of non-academic misconduct.

The school unsuccessfully petitioned the court in 2019 to quash that decision, arguing in part that the tribunal failed to properly confine itself to the evidence before it.

The tribunal had already dismissed other parts of Hale’s complaint relating to events before February 2016, because they were filed after a six-month limitation period.

A tribunal document says Hale found the non-academic misconduct process unduly demanding and she was concerned about the lack of training by committee members to make non-discriminatory decisions.

The Canadian Press does not typically identify complainants in cases of sexual assault, but Hale wants her name used.

Hale reported the alleged assault to a residence adviser a week after she says it happened and she was directed to a campus medical facility, where she was not physically examined, the tribunal document says.

Hale says she was not referred at the time to the school’s policies on sexual harassment and non-academic misconduct.

She says contact with her alleged attacker in class contributed to her declining mental health before she left her engineering program in 2015.

Hale was referred to the equity and inclusion office in February 2016, the document says, and she was later told campus security would investigate and forward its report to the committee.

It says Hale found “having to engage in continual advocacy for herself” made the process unduly demanding and stressful, and she argues it was not consistent with Human Rights Code requirements.

The committee later held a hearing without Hale after her psychologist advised she should not participate because she didn’t trust the process.

Hale was told in March 2017 that the committee did not find on the balance of probabilities that her alleged attacker had engaged in misconduct.

With the other student cleared of wrongdoing, the tribunal document says, Hale did not return to campus.

“She states she was no longer able to trust the university to provide a safe, harassment‐free and assault‐free educational environment,” it says.

The tribunal had agreed three times to adjourn hearings over Hale’s complaint, pending the outcome of the judicial review, but a decision released two days before the court dismissed the school’s petition last month found a fourth adjournment would have been unreasonable and unduly prejudiced Hale.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

UBC

Just Posted

(Pixabay.com photo)
No COVID-19 baby boom in Summerland

Pandemic has not resulted in surge in births in 2020 and 2021

(Black Press file photo)
EDITORIAL: Curtailing attempts at scams

The true total of losses from all scams and frauds could be much higher than the figures on file

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

People at the beach in front of Discovery Bay Resort on Tuesday, July 14. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)
Heat wave forecast for Okanagan-Shuswap

Temperatures are forecast to hit record breaking highs this week

Tony Costa/ Facebook
UPDATE: Out-of-control fire burning above Peachland

The blaze sparked on Sunday and is believed to be lightning caused

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Fans watch the warm-up before Game 6 between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Montreal Canadiens in NHL playoff hockey action Saturday, May 29, 2021 in Montreal. Quebec’s easing of COVID-19 restrictions will allow 2,500 fans to attend the game for the first time in fourteen months. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Two-thirds of Canadians say governments shouldn’t lift all COVID-19 restrictions

Poll reports Canadians who gained pandemic weight say they have gained 16 pounds on average

Paul Bernardo is shown in this courtroom sketch during Ontario court proceedings via video link in Napanee, Ont., on October 5, 2018. Teen killer and serial rapist Paul Bernardo is set for a parole hearing today. The designated dangerous offender, has been eligible for full parole for more than three years. Bernardo’s horrific crimes in the 1980s and early 1990s include for kidnapping, torturing and killing Kristen French and Leslie Mahaffy near St. Catharines, Ont. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Greg Banning
Killer rapist Paul Bernardo faces parole hearing today; victim families opposed

Designated dangerous offender has been eligible for full parole for more than three years.

People look over the damage after a tornado touched down in Mascouche, Que., north of Montreal, Monday, June 21, 2021. Dozens of homes were damaged and one death has been confirmed. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
One dead and extensive damage as tornado hits Mascouche, Que., north of Montreal

Damage reported in several parts of the city, and emergency teams dispatched to sectors hardest hit

Chilliwack secondary school’s principal is apologizing after a quote equating graduation with the end of slavery in the U.S. was included in the 2020-2021 yearbook. (Screenshot from submitted SnapChat)
B.C. student’s yearbook quote equates grad to end of slavery; principal cites editing error

Black former student ‘disgusted’ as CSS principal apologizes for what is called an editing error

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross. (Photo by Peter Versteege)
BC Liberal leadership candidate condemns ‘senseless violence’ of Okanagan church fires

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross says reconciliation isn’t about revenge for past tragedies

A coroner’s inquest will be taking place at the Capitol Theatre in Port Alberni for the next week. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Teen B.C. mom who died following police custody recalled as ‘friend to many’

Police sent Jocelyn George to hospital after intoxication had gone ‘beyond the realm’ of normal detox

FILE - In this Nov. 29, 2020, file photo, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib on Monday, June 21, 2021, became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he was not doing it for the attention but because “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.” (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay after their careers were over

Photograph By MICHAEL POTESTIO.KTW
Former Kamloops security gaurd wants job back after kicking incident caught on video

Rick Eldridge quit when a video surfaced of him kicking a man outside a facility for homeless

Most Read