ACC – Keep an open mind when determining which relationships are covered by family status protection. For example, the Ontario Human Rights Code defines family status as “the status of being in a parent and child relationship.” This definition however, has been liberally interpreted by both courts and tribunals to include most parent and child “type” relationships including non-biological parent and child relationships and non-biological gay and lesbian parents. The Ontario Human Rights Commission has also taken the position that family status protection extends to individuals providing eldercare to aging parents. Given the aging population, employers should prepare for family status accommodation requests from employees who are looking after older parents with special needs.
Health Zone – Aid experts alarmed by Canada’s new anti-abortion stand in foreign policy have received some raw political advice from a Conservative senator: “shut the f— up” or it could get worse.
“We’ve got five weeks or whatever left until G-8 starts. Shut the f— up on this issue,” Conservative Senator Nancy Ruth told a group of international-development advocates who gathered on Parliament Hill on Monday to sound the alarm about Canada’s hard-right stand against abortion in foreign aid.
Telegraph – “Banning corporal punishment is the model that the Council of Europe would like countries to follow. You can call it ’pressure’ if you like, but we are not about to shove anything down your throats. It is a matter of time and understanding, and we think that time will prove that we are on the right side of the debate on whether to ban corporal punishment of children.”
Detroit Free Press – “The United States is correct that it need not wait until people are killed before it arrests conspirators,” U.S. District Judge Victoria Roberts said in a 36-page decision. “But, the Defendants are also correct: their right to engage in hate-filled, venomous speech, is a right that deserves First Amendment protection.”
Toronto Sun – She is helping friend, Ray Nemard, 40, in his bid to obtain an apology from the commission after he was allegedly called a “f****** monkey,” by an operator at Coxwell subway station in 2004.
A complaint was filed to the Ontario Human Rights Commission, which is hearing his case.
“I am not happy by what I heard today,” Nemard said after the meeting. “The operator who did this to me is still on the job even though we know he has 16 complaints against him.”
He takes “pills and other medication” to help him cope with the slur, which he said led to a loss of his job as a chef.
Toronto Star – Hate speech and the Canadian Human Rights Commission: B
Any restriction on speech has to have a clear social benefit, and so we recognize the Canadian Human Rights Commission for its decision in the Lemire case to deem the hate speech provision of the Canadian Human Rights Code to be unconstitutional.
Examiner – Don’t expect Commissioner Lynch to bring about change to way the system works, at least not in anyway that protects and respects the fundamental freedoms Canadians cherish such as free expression…
Asking Ms. Lynch this week about changing well documented problem behaviours in the CHRC, she tried to tell me that they are rated as one of the best places to work by civil servants and that they are continually improving.
“We are proud of how we accomplish our work,” says Lynch. I just wish the rest of us could say the same.