PSAC’s Anti-Racism Action Plan

Over the past year, PSAC has been implementing its Anti-Racism Action Plan through consultations with members, and developing education and engagement opportunities as we review how our union serves, mobilizes, engages and represents Indigenous, Black, Asian and racialized members, works to address harm, and build a truly anti-racist union.

Here’s a breakdown of the work we’ve done so far, and what members can expect to see moving forward.

How the Anti-Racism Action Plan was developed

We consulted with Indigenous, Black, Asian and other racialized members across the country as well as with the National Indigenous Peoples’ Circle (NIPC) and the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC) to identify barriers to engagement and full participation within the union.

PSAC members provided clear direction to move forward:

  • There is a lack of representation of Indigenous, Black, Asian and other racialized members in union leadership and structures, and inadequate awareness of racism and unconscious bias in both the union’s leadership and in the membership.
  • Engagement opportunities (conventions, training, campaigns, etc.) for our Indigenous, Black, Asian, and racialized members must be enhanced.
  • The lack of disaggregated data and information is contributing to ineffective communication with these members.

To address these barriers, PSAC identified four core focus areas: Education; Representation, Engagement, and Political Action.

Objectives of the Anti-Racism Action Plan

  • To raise awareness and provide tools for leaders, union representatives and all members to become anti-racist activists;  
  • To increase the participation and engagement of Indigenous, Black, Asian and racialized members within the union at all levels – local, component, regional and national; 
  • To ensure representation through available recourse processes has an Indigenous, Black, Asian and anti-racism lens;
  • To meaningfully engage and support community organizations and initiatives fighting racism against Indigenous, Black, Asian and racialized communities; and,
  • To develop and undertake anti-racism, human rights, and political campaigns with Indigenous, Black, and Asian lenses.

Breaking down PSAC’s work on the Anti-Racism Action Plan 



The goal is to build awareness and provide concrete tools for leaders, union representatives, and all members to become anti-racist activists. The participation and engagement of Indigenous, Black, Asian, and racialized members must be prioritized at all levels of the union – local, component, regional, and national. 

What we're doing:

Education is an ongoing and integral part of this Plan that is never truly complete. As a union, we are committed to reflection and growth. Work we will continue to develop, improve, and deliver for members includes:   

  • A leadership program will be created for Indigenous, Black, Asian and other racialized PSAC members to support them in navigating the PSAC structure and to take on positions within the union. 

  • Mandatory training is being developed for union leaders, component and regional executives, and locals on anti-Indigenous, anti-Black racism and anti-Asian racism. 

  • Developing and delivering workshops/webinars on the Indian Residential School System and the implementation of the Calls to Action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (based on convention resolution 18/GEN-060)  

  • Continuing to deliver the “Introduction to the Union for Indigenous Members” and “Unionism on Turtle Island” workshops   

  • Reviewing and updating existing PSAC national courses with an anti-racism lens and developing new courses with an anti-Indigenous, anti-Black, and anti-Asian racism lens  

  • Developing an anti-Islamophobia course in accordance with 18/GEN-023    

  • Updating and delivering a national course on Leadership for Indigenous Women and a leadership course for Black and racialized members with input from the union’s membership 



A crucial part of union organizing is ensuring that all members have access to representation. Barriers that prevent Indigenous, Black, Asian and other racialized members from accessing representation or being provided with adequate representation must be addressed with an intersectional lens and with a trauma-informed approach.  

What we’ve done: 
  • Updated, revised and adapted the Advocacy and Representation on Racial Discrimination Workshop course. This course will be ready for delivery to Components, Locals, Stewarts and Directly Chartered Locals this fall.  

  • The course was delivered to the National Board of Directors in March 2023. 

What we're doing: 
  • Delivering Employment Equity training for members  

  • Continuing to add resources and updates to the Anti-Racism Action Plan hub with specialized information that addresses issues of intersectional and systemic racial discrimination  

  • Recruiting Indigenous, Black, and racialized members to take the stewards’ training to empower them to act and feel part of the union   

  • Providing plain-language tools for union representatives to identify systemic barriers, strategies to eliminate systemic racism and an equity analysis tool    

  • Identifying and examining human rights cases that may demonstrate racism against Indigenous, Black, Asian, and other racialized members  

  • Expanding and developing partnerships with community organizations, and community leaders who work to combat systemic racial discrimination issues 



Our members are the core of the union. Increasing engagement and representation of Indigenous, Black, Asian and other racialized members at the local, regional, component, and national levels is foundational to anti-racism work. We need to improve ways to meaningfully engage with Indigenous, Black, Asian and racialized members. This includes raising awareness and providing tools for members to become anti-racism activists, and encouraging Indigenous, Black, Asian and other racialized PSAC members to seek leadership roles in the union.  

What we’ve done: 
  • Developed and issued a membership survey to identify barriers to participation by Indigenous, Black, and other racialized members in the union; and gathered input on what these members need to become more engaged 

  • Held focus groups to learn how and why Indigenous, Black, Asian and other racialized members became engaged in the union and in their locals and to understand the barriers they face, and how these barriers can be overcome 

What we're doing: 
  • Revising the PSAC’s Racial Equality Statement (18/GEN-045) 

Political action

As a union we have a powerful voice to engage in political action with an Indigenous, Black, Asian and racialized lens. 

What we’ve done: 
  • Advocated for a thorough review of the Employment Equity Act 

  • Lobbied for a stand-alone Anti-Racism Office that is sufficiently resourced, to deal directly with matters of racism and discrimination in the workplace 

  • Our union met with the legal team from the Indigenous Class Action lawsuit and plans to support their class action as it moves ahead. 

What we're doing: 
  • Developing campaigns nationally and regionally on anti-racism., Continuing to support the Black Class Action: In the past two years, PSAC members shared painful stories of discrimination, employee exclusion and racial trauma following the launch of this lawsuit. Over 1100 of the nearly 1,500 plaintiffs are PSAC members, and over 70% are women. We thank these members for coming forward and we will continue to provide both financial and staff support to ensuring our members are made whole through this legal action.  

  • As a union, we’ve been calling for the federal government to settle the Black Class Action that was launched in 2020 for tens of thousands of Black federal public service workers. [link to CBC/Radio-Canada] 

The way forward  

Systemic racism is pervasive and impacts workers in all aspects of their lives, including and beyond the workplace.  

PSAC is committed to build on the objectives of the Anti-Racism Action Plan and encourages all members to get involved in their local human rights committees, area councils, and regional committees.  

We commit to providing regular updates about the Anti-Racism Action Plan. To stay informed, sign up for our mailing list.