Government of Canada’s new strategy on racism fails to address real issues faced by federal sector workers

The federal government recently launched its new anti-racism strategy Changing Systems, Transforming Lives: Canada’s Anti-Racism Strategy 2024-2028.  This new strategy is meant to set priorities to fight racism and discrimination in the federal public service, however it does not present pragmatic and long-term solutions to address systemic racism 

No mention of documented cases of racism in the federal public service 

The strategy presents no solutions regarding issues of race discrimination towards staff at the Canada Human Rights Commission (CHRC), nor a commitment to resolve the Black Class Action lawsuit and Indigenous Class Action put forward by workers. This is a glaring failure on the government’s part to address known instances of racism within the federal public service.  

This new strategy to fight racism and discrimination will be nothing more than lip service unless the government is willing to rectify decades of racism by settling these longstanding class action lawsuits. 

PSAC is encouraged to see a new Chief Commissioner appointed to the CHRC. It is a priority for PSAC and the Black Class Action Secretariat that the CHRC commits to addressing racism within its walls; we look forward to seeing how the new commissioner will use the government’s new strategy on racism to right wrongs at an institution found to have discriminated against its own racialized employees. 

Details on government’s new anti-racism strategy 

The government’s new anti-racism strategy focuses on addressing racism in sectors such as employment, justice and law enforcement, housing, health care and immigration.  

Its three strategic objectives are to set up institutional systems and legislative options to drive accountability and results, prioritize and support communities as experts in eliminating racism, and strengthen relationships between different orders of government, with national and international partners. 

PSAC and our members must be instrumental in the implementation of any new anti-racism strategies within the federal public service, and those who have been subject to racism within the public service need to be made whole. 


June 26, 2024