'The government needs to be doing more to ensure diversity throughout its workforce.'
Ottawa - (28 July 2010) - The Harper government's decision to kill the long Canadian census form is linked to a new attack the Conservatives on employment equity.
The Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC) says data required to make employment equity a reality is gathered from census information that the Tories are planning to kill.
The Conservatives launched a "review" of employment equity after disclosing that they planned to kill the long-form census.
“The government claims to support diversity but its (announcement) implies the opposite,” says PSAC. “It reinforces the misconception that equal opportunity is threatened by employment equity measures and that employment equity hiring policies are not based on merit.”
The purpose of employment equity is to ensure equal access to jobs for all and to make sure that workplaces reflect the diversity of the Canadian population.
The Employment Equity Act and the Public Service Employment Act already require all hiring to be based on merit and qualifications.
Less than 2% of job competitions in the federal public service are designated for equity group members and managers have to justify the use of these designations with data showing large gaps in their workforce representation.
“In fact, the government needs to be doing more to ensure diversity throughout its workforce,” the union argues.
A recent Senate Committee on Human Rights report says the federal public service is not keeping up with the private sector in terms of hiring a diverse workforce.
According to the report, “As the largest employer in the country, the federal public service should be representative of the public it serves, and should be providing leadership for businesses in other sectors rather than struggling to be representative enough for an increasingly diverse population.”
The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE