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Genetic characteristics

Four proposed prohibited grounds of discrimination

On September 26, 2018, a private member’s Bill 35, Human Rights Code Amendment Act, 2018 was introduced and received first reading in the Ontario legislature. The goal of Bill 35 is to add immigration status, genetic characteristics, police records, and social condition as prohibited grounds of discrimination in Ontario’s Human Rights Code.

 

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There’s a tidal shift happening in human rights – Part II are employers ready for Bill 164?

Bill 164 aims to expand the current protection offered by the Ontario Human Rights Code in relation to citizenship, race and place of origin to add immigration status, which will essentially eliminate an employer’s ability to discriminate on the basis of how long someone has been in the country.

 

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Update on genetic discrimination provisions in human rights legislation

Canada is on its way to including genetic discrimination provisions in its human rights legislation. Since March 2017, some interesting developments have occurred.

 

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Adding new prohibited grounds in Ontario Human Rights Code

Private member’s Bill 164, Human Rights Code Amendment Act, 2017, introduced on October 4, 2017 in the Ontario Legislature would amend the Ontario Human Rights Code (Code) to include four new prohibited grounds of discrimination including, social condition, police records, genetic characteristics and immigration status.

 

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Genetic discrimination provisions in human rights legislation: Will Ontario be the first Canadian jurisdiction?

Canada is on its way to including provisions in human rights legislation that prevents discrimination based on a person’s genetic characteristics. The issue is that a person can experience discrimination and harassment simply because of something that may be—something that has the potential of happening. Employers must be aware that human rights legislation is in the process of evolving to include provisions to prevent this type of discrimination, and this will apply in the workplace as well.

 

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Genetic non-discrimination: Update on Bill S-201

Bill S-201 would prohibit any person from requiring an individual to undergo a genetic test as a condition of: providing goods or services to that individual; entering into or continuing a contract or agreement with that individual; or offering or continuing specific terms or conditions in a contract or agreement with that individual. Those who contravene the rules would be subject to severe penalties.

 

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‘Genetic characteristics’ as a prohibited ground of discrimination in Ontario?

A recent private member’s bill introduced by a Liberal MPP in the Ontario legislature would add “genetic characteristics” as a prohibited ground of discrimination to the Ontario Human Rights Code. As currently drafted, “genetic characteristics” would be defined as “genetic traits of an individual, including traits that may cause or increase the risk to develop a disorder or disease”.

 

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