New Brunswick - Filing a Human Rights Complaint

New Brunswick
Filing a Human Rights Complaint

Instructions, Resources and Help lines

If you have been denied service due to not wearing a mask, business owners could be held liable for a fine (up to $75,000 as it varies in each province) if you file a human rights complaint.

A business is not “private”.  When a business owner obtains a business license, they are open to the “public” and they are not permitted to discriminate against anyone who is exempt from wearing a mask.

Federal Privacy Act: Nobody has the right to request to see an exemption. It is a violation of your privacy rights under the Privacy Act. This is your personal medical information between you and your physician.

What is personal information under the Privacy Act?  Click Here Privacy Act

“The Privacy Act offers protections for personal information, which it defines as any recorded information “about an identifiable individual.”

Covid-19 measures must comply with our Constitution, including our Charter, they do not nullify nor supersede them, nor is there any express mention in any such law, statute, regulation, order or Guidance to do so.

According to the Public Health New Brunswick you are exempt for the following reasons for wearing a mask

  • Children under the age of two;
  • People with a medical condition, including a mental health disorder, that prevents them from wearing a mask;
  • Anyone in situations that include a person who is deaf or hard of hearing who relies on lip reading, clear sound or facial expressions to communicate;
  • Performer or officiant who is performing activities that require vocalization (like talking or singing) at a faith gathering, wedding, funeral, social event, or arts and culture event;
  • People who are receiving medical treatment or receiving a service that requires it to be removed. In these cases, they may remove their mask only for the duration of the treatment or service only (masks must be worn at all other times in hospital and healthcare facilities)
  • As per WorkSafeNB’s guidance, face masks do not have to be worn where physical barriers are in place that protect people from potential exposure (e.g. plexiglass barrier). Workers for whom wearing a face mask would introduce a risk to the workers’ health and safety related to their work environment may use a face shield as a substitute to the face covering.

“Some people are not able to wear masks for various reasons. It’s important to remember that these reasons may not always be visible to others. New Brunswickers should always treat each other with kindness, respect and understanding. Examples of people who may be unable to wear a mask”


As the New Brunswick government introduced exceptional measures to contain and combat the spread of COVID-19, the NBHRC, pursuant to its mandate to protect and promote human rights in the province, reminds all New Brunswickers that certain population groups, including, but not limited to, seniors, persons with disabilities, racial minorities, and persons disadvantaged by their socioeconomic condition, could suffer harsher adverse impact of these measures.

Consequently, the NBHRC reminds government departments, employers, service providers, and all other stakeholders currently developing emergency response plans, that we all have a responsibility to ensure that the rights of vulnerable population groups are duly protected in these response measures.

Grounds of Discrimination:

Director of Human Rights Commission: Marc-Alain Mallet

Phone: 506-453-2301  E-mail: [email protected]

Filing a Complaint:

If you wish to file a complaint about discrimination or harassment in New Brunswick, you must use the complaint form approved by the Commission.

If you need guidance to complete the form, please contact the Commission.

Phone 1-888-471-2233 (toll-free)

E-mail: [email protected].

To find out more about the complaint process, please consult the following resources  Complaint Process pamphlet,  Introduction to Grounds of Discrimination and  Introduction to areas of discrimination.

To complete the forms, you need to download forms A, B, C & D (listed below)
and fill them out using free Adobe Reader software. You will need to send them back to [email protected]

Do not use your browser like Google chrome, Safari or Explorer, etc. to complete the forms.

How to completing the Human Rights complaint form

A- Human Rights Complaint Form

B- Contact Information Form

C- Authorization for Release of Personal Info Form

D- Authorization for Release of Medical Information

Time Limit Extension Request Form

Who Can Help?


Legal Line is a Federal not-for-profit organization providing access to Canadian laws since 1993. Educating the public about the law is a necessary step in advancing Access to Justice.



CanLaw is referral service across New Brunswick to find the lawyer for your case.


Disclaimer:  This information is not intended to be used as legal or health advice. We encourage you to do your own research.