EDMONTON, AB (February 24, 2014): The Mihaly v. The Association of Professional Engineers, Geologists and Geophysicists of Alberta (APEGA) decision is more proof that the Alberta Human Rights Commission is broken and needs to be reformed, the Wildrose Official Opposition said today.
In his ruling, Chairman Moosa Jiwaji said APEGA discriminated against Ladislav Mihaly for requiring him to take a series of exams before he could be licensed as an engineer in Alberta. Mihaly had previously refused to take some of the exams and failed the ones he did take. Mr. Jiwaji ordered APEGA to pay Mihaly $10,000, provide him with a personal mentor and to create a committee of internationally educated engineers to re-evaluate his academic record. “The professional requirements for 70,000 professional engineers in Alberta should not be subverted by political correctness enforced through a broken human rights commission,” Wildrose Justice Critic Shayne Saskiw said. “This decision puts serious economic costs on our industry and on APEGA, as well as social costs on Albertans who rely on safe structures built by qualified engineers.” Saskiw also said that Premier Redford must take leadership on this issue, as she promised to reform the Alberta Human Rights Commission during the 2011 PC leadership race. “Ms. Redford promised to reform the Alberta Human Rights Act but has done nothing since becoming Premier,” Saskiw said. “She can show leadership on this issue and make necessary reforms to the Alberta Human Rights Commission now.” Wildrose Jobs, Skills, Training & Labour critic Gary Bikman added that Alberta’s accreditation program for engineers is working just fine. “The policies that are in place are there to ensure competency and safety in professional fields. These requirements should be made and measured by APEGA and professionals in the industry, not by human rights lawyers,” Bikman said. “With a vibrant natural resource sector Alberta will need more engineers, but accrediting individuals who can’t meet requirements is not the right way to find them.”