On June 19, 2017, Bill C-16, An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code, received Royal Assent. As a result, “gender identity” and “gender expression” are now prohibited grounds of discrimination under the Canadian Human Rights Act (the “Act”). In particular, section 3(1) of the Act now reads:
Prohibited grounds of discrimination
3 (1) For all purposes of this Act, the prohibited grounds of discrimination are race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, family status, disability and conviction for an … Continue Reading
In Stewart v. Elk Valley Coal Corp., 2017 SCC 30, the Supreme Court of Canada recently reaffirmed the two-part test for discrimination in the workplace. Centered on the termination of an employee’s employment for drug use in violation of a drug and alcohol policy, this decision reinforces employers’ ability to implement and rely upon drug and alcohol policies aimed at promoting a safe workplace.
Elk Valley Coal Corporation implemented an Alcohol, Illegal Drugs & Medication Policy (“Policy”) aimed at promoting safety at its mine. The Policy contained a “No Free Accident Rule” – employees who disclosed any … Continue Reading
The national epidemic of opioid abuse and overdoses is almost a daily feature in news media. Meanwhile, recent figures indicate that prescriptions for painkillers continue to increase in Canada. It is in this context that the Canadian Human Rights Commission recently released a new guide: Impaired at Work: Guide to Accommodating Substance Dependence. As stated at the outset of the guide, its purpose is “to help federally-regulated employers address substance dependence in the workplace in a way that is in harmony with human rights legislation.”
The definition of disability under the Canadian Human Rights Act includes “previous or existing … Continue Reading