Individuals, private companies, schools, trade unions, professional associations – plus provincial and municipal governments – are subject to human rights law. If you violate the Code you could be liable for the harm caused by discrimination.
Everything related to employment is protected under the Code. That includes:
In addition, trade unions and professional associations cannot discriminate when it comes to collective agreements or membership.
As an employer you may think the Code will unnecessarily restrict whom you hire. That's not true. Human rights law does not limit your ability to hire and keep good employees. The Code just means you must consider only the qualifications necessary and specific to the job - like merit and skill. This way, you're sure to get the best person for the job.
The Code doesn't apply if you're hiring someone to work in a private home or your own home. However, once you hire someone, you cannot discriminate against him or her in the terms and conditions of employment.
Employers, service providers and others must assist people with special needs - that's called accommodation. Accommodation is required unless it would cause undue hardship.
Sexual harassment is sex discrimination and it's against the law.
It's any unwanted sexual conduct. It can be verbal or physical. Employers must protect their employees from sexual harassment in the workplace. Whether you are aware of sexual harassment or not, you are responsible for the actions of your employees while they're on the job.
Racial harassment is race discrimination and it's against the law.
It can be verbal or physical. It includes negative comments, jokes, teases, slurs, threats, etc. about someone's colour, perceived race, ancestry, nationality, place of origin, or culture.
As an employer, you must provide a discrimination free workplace. It's up to you to protect your employees from racial harassment. A good way to do this is to set up a code of conduct and an anti-harassment policy.
Some jobs may require people to be of a certain age or sex or to have a particular ability. Even where age, sex or ability is a reasonable occupational qualification, an employer must make reasonable efforts to accommodate people.
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