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After 10 job applications and zero interviews, Sikh man says Burnaby discriminated

A Lower Mainland home builder has filed a human rights complaint against the City of Burnaby, saying the city won’t hire him because of his race, colour and religion.
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 Burnaby City Hall. File photo by Cornelia Naylor/Burnaby NOWBurnaby City Hall. File photo by Cornelia Naylor/Burnaby NOW

A Lower Mainland home builder has filed a human rights complaint against the City of Burnaby, saying the city won’t hire him because of his race, colour and religion.

Gurinder Mangat, an observant Sikh born in India, has built homes in Burnaby for 14 years and works as a qualified building inspector in another Lower Mainland municipality, according to his filings with the tribunal.

He says he has applied for 10 different bylaw-enforcement-related positions with the city since 2016 but has never gotten so much as an interview for any of them, despite being qualified.

“Mr. Mangat alleges in the context of each application that he was qualified for the job, was barred from proceeding in the competition at the application stage without explanation, and the jobs were awarded to less qualified white people,” stated tribunal registrar Steven Adamson in a ruling last month.

Adamson accepted the complaint for filing, ruling it had been filed in time and Mangat had provided a case that could be argued in front to the tribunal.

“Of course, these allegations are unproven at this time and are disputed in their entirety by the city who claims it did not discriminate,” Adamson noted.

The City of Burnaby declined to comment on the complaint.

“The City of Burnaby takes its rights and responsibilities seriously; however, this is a confidential employee relations matter, and the city is unable to comment at this time,” stated an email from communications manager Chris Bryan.