Interpretation Guidelines Manual British Columbia Employment Standards Act and Regulations

EMPLOYMENT STANDARDS ACT - PART 10 - COMPLAINTS, INVESTIGATIONS AND DETERMINATIONS

ESA Section 75 – If complainant requests identity be kept confident


Contents:

Summary
Text of Legislation
Policy Interpretation
Related Information


Summary

This section confirms that, if requested, a complainant’s identity will remain confidential (when possible) and outlines the circumstances when disclosure of the complainant’s identity is necessary. 


Text of Legislation

75. (1) If requested in writing by a complainant, the director must not disclose any identifying information about the complainant unless

(a) the disclosure is necessary for the purposes of a proceeding under this Act, or

(b) the director considers the disclosure is in the public interest.

(2) Subsection (1) applies despite any provision of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act other than s.44 (2) and

(3) of that Act.


Policy Interpretation

A person may file a confidential complaint.

If a complainant wishes to remain confidential, they must state it on the complaint form.

The director will inform complainants if confidentiality is not possible in their case. While this section provides the director with the ability to disclose an individual’s identity, this would only be done in rare cases. For example, the complainant may be the only person able to provide the information needed in order to issue a determination.

Disclosure of the complainant's identity may be necessary if the matter is brought before the Employment Standards Tribunal. Since complaints can be very specific or unique, the director can usually determine in advance whether the identity of the complainant must be disclosed in order to obtain relevant information depending on the nature of the complaint; for example, where the complaint was for compensation for length of service, and the employer contended the complainant had quit.


Related Information

Related sections of the Act or Regulation

ESA

ESR

Other

Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act

Inquiry Act (ss.12, 15 and 16)

See Employment Standards Factsheets

Factsheet

Complaint Resolution and the Employment Standards Act