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Discrimination

Manitoba Human Rights Code to prohibit discrimination based on gender identity, disadvantaged social status

Topics: - Discrimination
Jurisdiction: - Manitoba

The Government of Manitoba issued a news release today concerning amendments to the province's Human Rights Code that would prohibit discrimination based on gender identity and disadvantaged social status.

The amendments are found in Bill 36, the Human Rights Code Amendment Act.

The release states as follows:

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Canadian Human Rights Commission "Cautions Employers on Rights of Aging Workers"

Jurisdiction: - Canada/Federal

The Canadian Human Rights Commission issued a news release on March 26, 2012 that "Cautions Employers on Rights of Aging Workers". The release reads:

On December 16, 2011, the Government of Canada repealed the section of the Canadian Human Rights Act that permitted federally regulated employers to impose mandatory retirement in some circumstances.

This measure was included in the Budget Implementation Act, which also stipulated a one-year transition period before the repeal of section 15 (1) (c) of the Canadian Human Rights Act takes effect.

The Canadian Human Rights Commission has received inquiries and is aware of media commentary about employers seeking to take advantage of the transition period to force employees to retire before they are ready to. While there is no evidence that this is taking place, the Commission believes it is prudent to caution any employer that might be considering such action to think again.  read more »

Class action filed against RCMP: Lawsuit alleges widespread sexual discrimination and harassment

Jurisdiction: - All
Sector: - Public Safety

The following news release was issued on March 27, 2012 by law firms Klein Lyons, a law firm with offices in Vancouver and Toronto, and / or Watkins Law, a law firm in Thunder Bay, Ontario:

CLASS ACTION FILED AGAINST RCMP
Lawsuit Alleges Widespread Sexual Discrimination and Harassment

VANCOUVER, March 27, 2012-A class action lawsuit was filed today in the B.C. Supreme Court against the R.C.M.P. on behalf of female employees of the RCMP. The suit, filed by former RCMP constable Janet Merlo, alleges widespread systemic discrimination by the RCMP against female members, civilian members and civil service employees.  read more »

Facebook issues statement against employers asking prospective or actual employees to reveal passwords

Facebook's Chief Privacy Officer, Erin Egan, issued a statement on March 23, 2012 setting out the company's opposition to employers asking prospective or actual employees to reveal their Facebook passwords. The statement reads:  read more »

Ontario HR Tribunal dismisses human rights application where employee also filed wrongful dismissal court claim

Jurisdiction: - Ontario

In Jarrett v. Vance, 2012 HRTO 24, the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal dismissed a human rights application where the employee had also filed a wrongful dismissal claim in court.

In reaching this decision, the Tribunal stated:

I am satisfied that the applicant's Statement of Claim and this Application are based on the same facts and that both assert the same type of allegations, as well as seek similar remedies. In fact, the applicant's narrative in both the Application and the Statement of Claim are virtually identical. While the Statement of Claim makes no explicit reference to the Code, it is clear that the applicant's allegations concern the same events that are alleged to constitute discrimination and reprisal in the Application and that both assert the same rights with respect to unfair dismissal and failure to provide work  read more »

No free-standing duty to treat employee “fairly and with due respect for dignity" during accommodation process

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia
Sector: - Health Care

In Emergency Health Services Commission v. Cassidy, 2011 BCSC 100, the BC Supreme Court ruled that there was no free-standing procedural obligation on an employer to treat an employee “fairly, and with due respect for his dignity" during the duty to accommodate process, the failure of which could ground an award of damages.

The BC Human Rights Tribunal had previously ruled in this case that while accommodating the employee's physical disability would have represented an undue hardship to the employer, the employer was still liable for damages to the employee for failing to treat him fairly and with due respect for his dignity during the duty to accommodate process.

The damages awarded by the Tribunal included an award of $22,500 for injury to dignity, feelings and self-respect. 

The Tribunal's decisions can be found here:  read more »