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Ontario human rights commission

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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Three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk

The three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk deal with: Ontario’s current and upcoming minimum wage; whether the terms of an employee’s employment contract could be implied because of industry practice; and Ontario Human Rights Commission’s new report, Not on the menu: OHRC inquiry report on sexualized and gender-based dress codes in restaurants.

 

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Definition of disability and the Ontario Human Rights Commission

When creating policies that make statements about accessibility, attempts should be made to view disability as a social system instead of a schedule of impairments in order to align an organization’s forward movement with principles of Human Rights. Also, the time is long past due for an evaluation of how intersecting identities can create unique accessibility and accommodation needs.

 

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FAQ: Family status and child care difficulties #learnthelatest

At the June 2, 2016, Ontario Employment Law Conference, during the Q&A session, we received numerous questions on topics covered at the conference but could not address them all. From time to time, till the next conference, we will be posting and answering some of these questions on the blog.

 

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Mental health or physical disabilities that deal with the duty to accommodate

Mastering the ins and outs of the duty to accommodate under human rights legislation is hard. In fact, some would go so far as to say impossible. It’s no wonder this topic has floated to the top of the list of challenges faced by HR practitioners. I’ve given this some thought and come up with a number of rules that I feel should be followed in all cases.

 

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Interview with the Chief Commissioner of the OHRC on gender specific dress code

With the Ontario Human Rights Commission’s recent position on gender-specific dress codes, and with the increase of attention in the news regarding bars and restaurants requiring women to wear high heels, low-cut tops and short skirts, I thought it would be beneficial for our readers to get Chief Commissioner Renu Mandhane’s take on the issue of gender specific and sexualized dress codes in the workplace, and what employers should be doing to ensure that their dress codes are in compliance with Ontario’s Human Rights Code.

 

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Accessibility is a human rights issue

Accessibility is a human rights issue. When we look at how it is enacted through the Ontario Human Rights Commission, their online trainings, and their policy papers, we can plainly see that this is the case.

 

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Ontario Human Rights Commission’s policy position on gender-specific dress codes

Can you think of a store, restaurant, or bar that appears to require women to wear low-cut tops, short skirts, tight dresses, or high heels when they go to work? Well, it might be wise for those employers to take another look at their dress code policy in light of the Ontario Human Rights Commission position on gender-specific dress code announced on International Women’s Day 2016 and the passing into law of occupational health and safety provisions protecting against workplace sexual harassment and violence. Under Bill 132, the OHSA’s definition of “workplace harassment” will be expanded to include “workplace sexual harassment.”

 

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Consultation and feedback processes should not be underestimated

Consultation and feedback processes should not be underestimated.  Doing away with the old systems of decision making provides for a more thorough engagement with those groups that would represent gaps in policy and operations.

 

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Deaf worker terminated due to ‘inconvenience’

You’d probably be fair in thinking that a deaf, gay Aboriginal man can have a hard time getting a break, but Darryl Wesley seems like the type of person who doesn’t let obstacles get in his way. Nonetheless, when he was terminated from a landscaping job in North Bay, Ontario…

 

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Lugonia v. Arista Homes: Pregnancy, short-term contracts and the “Code”

In the summer of 2013 the applicant, Amanda Lugonia, began a new job at the same time she discovered she was starting a new family, the result of which was instant dismissal from her new employer. The respondent denied that the applicant’s pregnancy was a factor in the termination of her employment and in addition denied knowledge of the pregnancy, claiming the reason for her termination was due to lack of “fit”.

 

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The cost of racial stereotyping: Adams v. Knoll North America

Following a verbal altercation with his supervisor, the applicant was terminated after he refused to partake in an anger management program as a requirement of his continued employment. On October 31, 2008 the applicant filed an application with the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario alleging discrimination based on race. The respondents, Knoll, denied the allegations.

 

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Sexual harassment under the Code: Smith v. The Rover’s Rest

The case of Smith v. The Rover’s Rest, 2013 HRTO 700 is a recent case dealing with sexual harassment and reprisal under the Human Rights Code of Ontario. At the time of the incidents, the applicant, Debbie Smith was a 39-year-old mother being paid $7.00 per hour as a bartender at the Rover’s Rest in […]

 

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The older job applicant: Human Rights considerations

The number of workers over the age of 65 has significantly increased in recent years, and a survey by Towers Watson found that one-third of all respondents and 42 percent of older workers have decided to delay retirement. This aging workforce demographic means that not only are there more older workers remaining in their employment, but also that there are many older workers seeking new employment.

 

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Arbitrators should apply ‘privacy spectrum’ to personal information

The names of people involved in labour arbitration should be disclosed with the arbitrator’s decisions, unless there are compelling reasons not to do so, according to the open-court principle and the public’s interest. The British Columbia Labour Relations Board affirmed the law in a recent review of an arbitrator’s decision. The board also affirmed arbitrators’ […]

 

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