The results of a major research project about Alberta employers perspectives on human rights in the workplace have been released by the Alberta Human Rights and Citizenship Commission. The study, considered to be the first of its kind in Canada, shows that Alberta employers believe respecting human rights is good for business. Eighty per cent of human rights complaints originate in the workplace. The study also revealed that employers want to learn more about the Human Rights, Citizenship and Multiculturalism Act, the law that governs human rights in Alberta. Employers also expressed interest in creating more positive and diverse workplaces that are free of discrimination. The project was undertaken with the support of the Human Rights, Citizenship and Multiculturalism Education Fund. The Commission undertook the research in order to reduce discrimination in the workplace. The survey results were encouraging and I am delighted that employers want to enhance their workplaces by implementing positive human rights practices, said Charlach Mackintosh, chief commissioner of the Human Rights and Citizenship Commission. The Commission will do everything it can to help employers meet their goal. The results of the study will help the Commission meet employers needs for information on human rights law, on how to prevent discrimination in the workplace and on building inclusive workplaces. Employers indicated an interest in many human rights topics, including: information on legal rights and responsibilities, how to resolve human rights complaints arising in their workplaces, how to prevent gender-based discrimination and how to create environments respectful of diversity. Highlights - 90% of employers thought it was important to be informed about human rights - 66% of employers did not provide human rights information to their employees - Larger companies and those employing a larger female workforce rated human rights issues as high in importance - Employers who participated in the focus groups were unanimous that positive human rights practices in the workplace are good for business. - 562 employers (ranging from businesses with under 10 employees to 4,500 employees) responded to the telephone survey, and 35 employers participated in four focus groups The employers perspectives research has provided us with valuable information on how we can enhance the service we provide to Albertans in the workplace, said Mackintosh. While we already provide educational presentations and materials related to human rights and employment, the findings of this study will help us to develop and promote our programs and services in a more targeted way. The Commission offers a wide variety of educational materials and services that relate to employment, including a comprehensive Web site with a section specific to human rights in the workplace, a confidential telephone inquiry service, a free electronic newsletter, videos on discrimination and the law, information sheets, educational presentations and displays. Most information is available on the Commission Web site as well as in print versions. A number of new Commission initiatives target employers and employees: * A series of workshops will address issues such as harassment, hiring and firing practices, accommodation, building an inclusive workplace and the complaint process. * Two new bulletins explore the employer's duty to accommodate and look at rights and responsibilities related to pregnancy, childbirth and adoption. * Educational videos featuring vignettes of common human rights situations will soon be available on the Web site. The Commission will plan more new initiatives based on the priorities identified by Alberta employers in this landmark study. The full report and a summary version are available on the Commission's Web site at www.albertahumanrights.ab.ca (Publications and Resources/Research and Reports). The Alberta Human Rights and Citizenship Commission is an independent commission created by the Government of Alberta. The Commission serves Albertans by offering human rights education services and by helping Albertans resolve human rights complaints. The Commission's goals are to foster equality and reduce discrimination. Cassie Palamar Manager, Education and Commission Services Alberta Human Rights and Citizenship Commission 310, 525 - 11 Avenue SW Calgary AB T2R 0C9 Telephone: 403/297-7437 Fax: 403/297-6567 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org www.albertahumanrights.ab.ca Subscribe to our free electronic newsletter at www.albertahumanrights.ab.ca/publications/AHRIS.asp ======== Global Human Rights Education listserv ======== Send mail intended for the list to <email@example.com>. Archives of the list can be found at: http://www.hrea.org/lists/hr-education/markup/maillist.php If you have problems (un)subscribing, contact <firstname.lastname@example.org>. **You are welcome to reprint, copy, archive, quote or re-post this item, but please retain the original and listserv source.
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