On December 10, Human Rights Day...ACT!

Human rights cannot be taken for granted.

Support Indigenous rights

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission called for the adoption of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Parliament has an opportunity to adopt the Declaration by enacting Bill C-262 which provides a framework for the federal government to ensure that Canada’s laws are in harmony with the Declaration.

Work for trans rights

This year, gender identity and gender expression became prohibited grounds of discrimination under the Canadian Human Rights Act. Public Services and Procurement Canada also became the first federal institution to adopt a guide on workplace inclusion for trans people, thanks to the work of PSAC members.

  • Write to Treasury Board President Scott Brison to make “Support for Trans Employees: A Guide for Employees and Managers” a guide for use across the federal public service.

Stop domestic violence

Experiencing domestic violence shouldn’t mean losing your job. Victims may need time off to attend medical appointments, relocate, get counselling, or meet with lawyers or police. Manitoba’s employment standards provide five days of paid leave. The federal government’s bill C-65 would grant 10 unpaid days. These are great first steps but they don’t go far enough.

  • Call on your provincial or territorial government to provide 10 days of paid leave for victims of domestic violence.
  • Ask the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour Patty Hajdu to amend Bill C-65 to make the 10 days paid leave.

Reject racism

The Quebec government’s Bill 62 is an infringement on religious freedom and is contrary to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Although the government argues it is not intended to target any specific religion, in reality, it will disproportionally impact Muslim women who wear a face veil, such as the niqab by impeding their ability to access hospitals, schools, public transit and police services. Public services must be available to all.

  • Speak out against those who deny human rights to some members in our communities.

Take action on accessibility legislation

The federal government concluded its consultation on accessibility legislation earlier this year. Now is the time to remove accessibility and inclusion barriers faced by persons with disabilities in the public service by improving legislation, processes and policies that can serve as a model for all employers in the federal sector. PSAC would like to see monitoring, reviews and audits, a complaints mechanism, progress reports, action plans, enforcement mechanisms and a focus on prevention tools.

  • Write, tweet or message your Member of Parliament and tell them that accessibility and inclusion are important to you. Ask them to help remove barriers faced by persons with disabilities in the public service and to support the legislative changes needed to improve working conditions for all members with disabilities.

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December 10, 2017
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