One way to improve your workplace is to prevent discrimination. Even if you do not intend it, discrimination can arise from your workplace policies, practices or unwritten policies from people’s behaviour in your organization.
Preventing discrimination starts with taking a closer look at your existing policies and practices. Consider what needs to be changed, refined or clarified so that all of your employees’ various needs are respected.
Create your own human rights protection policies
Human rights policies will help your organization prevent discrimination and avoid complaints. Some examples include:
- a duty to accommodate policy;
- a pregnancy and parental leave policy; and
- an anti-harassment policy.
The Commission has other model policies that may be useful.
Think about your physical workplace
Assess your building, facilities, office layout and safety policies to determine whether everyone’s needs are being met. Ramps, automatic doors and accessible washrooms are examples of what your organization can do to accommodate everyone.
Confront discrimination as soon as it happens
Instruct your staff on how to confront and resolve discrimination the moment it happens. Make sure any attempts to resolve a conflict are always fully documented.
How can I resolve conflicts when they arise?
Even with careful planning and good policies in place discrimination can still occur. The Commission encourages you to develop a fair, flexible and efficient process to resolve issues within your organization. This type of process is known as an internal dispute resolution process.
Having your own internal dispute resolution process that is fair, flexible, efficient and effective can:
- prevent discrimination complaints.
- help resolve disputes before they get worse
- allow people to have an active role in resolving the dispute.
- resolve the issue easier and faster.
- save legal fees and/or court costs for your organization.