The complainant was a refugee claimant who appeared before the member at the Refugee Protection Division (RPD).
The complaint contained two allegations as follows:
- The complainant alleged that the member, in his decision, addressed and commented on issues that were not included in the Basis of Claim (BOC) form; and
- The complainant alleged that the audio recordings of the hearings had been manipulated such that statements made by the member during the hearings are missing. The complainant alleged that certain remarks and comments made by the member do not appear in the recording, that the audio recording was manipulated during the hearings by starting and stopping the recording so that the member’s remarks and interventions were excluded.
The Office of Integrity forwarded the complaint to the Chairperson for a decision on whether the complaint was outside the scope of the complaints process under paragraph 5.5 of the Procedures for Making a Complaint About a Member (Complaints Procedure).
Both parties were informed about the resolution of the complaint in the Chairperson’s decision letter of May 21, 2019
The Chairperson decided that the first allegation was adjudicative in nature. Allegations related to a member’s decision fall outside the scope of the Complaints Procedures. The Chairperson explained in his letter to the complainant that the complaint process is intended to address a member's conduct and not their decision-making. Complaints cannot be about what a member decides in a case.
With respect to the second allegation, the Chairperson noted that the Director of Integrity listened to the audio recordings and found no evidence to support the allegation that the recordings were manipulated. The Chairperson found this allegation to be without merit.
The complaint was screened out and the file was closed.
Note - The first allegation related to the member’s decision. The proper remedy to address this allegation is through the appeals process or judicial review at the Federal Court, as the case may be. This approach is based in the legal requirement that members’ adjudicative independence cannot be fettered.