HRLSC Client Wins Sexual Harassment Claim Against Former Employer

The HRLSC recently represented an applicant before the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario (HRTO) in her fight to address sexual harassment that she was subjected to by her employer. The respondent, 53-year-old Mark Langford, was a long-time family friend of the applicant, Allyson Kreps, who was only 20 years old when she was hired to work for the respondent’s maintenance company.

Image of a gravel road through a forrest.

In Kreps v. AHMIC Maintenance & Storage Ltd., the employer's inappropriate culminated in a trip to the respondent’s remote trap camp, which was unreachable by cell phone.

The applicant alleged in her application to the HRTO that the respondent regularly made inappropriate and suggestive comments to her and used her position of employment with his company to repeatedly create opportunities to be alone with her. His behaviour culminated in a trip to the respondent’s remote trap camp, which was unreachable by cell phone. While at the trap camp, the applicant alleged the respondent sexually solicited and assaulted her. These events provoked the applicant to have a panic attack. Given the remoteness of the site and the fact that the respondent had driven her there, the applicant was unable to leave the site or call for help.

In Kreps v. AHMIC Maintenance & Storage Ltd., 2024 HRTO 214, the HRTO found that the applicant had faced discrimination on the basis of sex, including sexual harassment in her workplace. In its decision, the HRTO noted that “the respondent’s conduct is indicative of not appreciating his obligations under the Code with respect to sexual harassment.”

In its remedies, the HRTO took into account “the fact that the most heinous incident occurred while the applicant was alone with the respondent in an isolated area is a serious aggravating factor.”

The Tribunal ordered the respondent to:

  • pay over $39,000 in damages including compensation, loss of income and the costs of counseling for the applicant; and
  • complete the Ontario Human Rights Commission training modules on sexual harassment at work: 1) OHRC and HRPA Webinar on Preventing Sexual Harassment at Work and 2) Preventing Sexual Harassment at Work: An Overview