Archives: Disability

Subscribe to Disability RSS Feed

Accessible Canada Act – The Act to Ensure a Barrier Free Canada

Canada has just passed a new law to strengthen accessibility for people with a disability in federally regulated workplaces and organizations. The Act to Ensure a Barrier Free Canada, also known as the Accessible Canada Act (the “Act”), came into force on July 11, 2019 and aims to create a “Canada without barriers” by the … Continue Reading

Accommodating Addictions

A labour arbitration decision out of Nova Scotia has got us thinking about what will qualify as addiction and justify accommodation in the work setting.  In Unifor, Local 2215 v IMP Group Ltd (Aerospace Division) (AB Grievance), [2019] NSLAA No 4, Arbitrator Richardson determined that an employee’s on the job masturbation was not justified by … Continue Reading

Family Status Discrimination: The Statutory Framework

Discrimination on the grounds of “family status” continues to be a hot topic for Canadian employers. Are employers required to accommodate an employee’s eldercare obligations? Are these sorts of obligations different than an employee’s childcare obligations?  Where is the line between personal preference to help out one’s parents and a medical or legal obligation that … Continue Reading

2014 AODA Requirements for Large Private Employers

On January 1, 2014, private sector employers with 50 or more employees in Ontario face the next round of compliance requirements under the Accessibility for Ontarians with a Disability Act, 2005 (“AODA”).  Most organizations have already complied with the AODA Customer Service Regulation.  The AODA Integrated Accessibility Regulation  (“IAR”) sets out the followings requirements to … Continue Reading

When Does Racism Amount to a Poisoned Workplace?

Does racism necessarily lead to a poisoned workplace? At the end of last month, the Ontario Court of Appeal concluded in General Motors of Canada Limited v Yohann Johnson that while the former employee, Johnson, “genuinely believed that he had been the victim of racism in his workplace” and that his “perception of events unfortunately … Continue Reading

Can You Discriminate Against a Volunteer?

The Ontario Human Rights Code and the Accessibility for Ontarians with a Disability set out the rights and obligations regarding employees, but what about volunteers?  A reader of this blog (thanks Angie!) has asked about the application of these laws when recruiting volunteers.  Human rights codes across Canada work largely the same on this issue, but since … Continue Reading

Who Enforces AODA Standards?

I have questioned the teeth of the Accessibility of Ontarians with a Disability Act (“AODA”) in my past blog post, Where’s the Teeth?. While the fines for non-compliance are huge (up to $100,000 per day – see section 83 of AODA Reg 191/11), the regime relies on the Ministry of Community and Social Services (the … Continue Reading

New AODA Public Space Standards

The Ontario provincial government just released proposed regulations for the accessibility of the built environment. The standard introduces various amendments to AODA’s Integrated Accessibility Standard (Reg 191/11), including the introduction of the new Part IV.1, entitled Design of Public Spaces Standards (Accessibility Standards for the Built Environment). The new Standard will only apply to new construction … Continue Reading

New Employer Standards for Employees with Disabilities

Last Friday, the Ontario government passed the Integrated Disability Regulation under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA).  The Regulation includes a number of requirements for employers to remove barriers and ensure accessibility for employees.  The Regulation contains three standards for organizations to meet, including an Employment Standard at Part III.  A good summary … Continue Reading
LexBlog