Human Rights Legal Support Centre

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What is Discrimination?

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The Code protects against discrimination when applying for a job, getting a raise or promotion, in your working conditions, or in being disciplined, laid off or fired. It also protects against sexual harassment.

Examples of discrimination in employment include firing an employee because she is pregnant or asking about marital status or racial background on an application form.

The discrimination must be linked to one of the grounds listed earlier, such as race, sex, age or disability.

If your employment problem is not linked to a Code ground - for example, if your employer owes you unpaid wages or overtime pay - you may get help from the Ministry of Labour at 1-800-531-5551.

If you have been harassed at work, or experienced threats of violence that are not related to a human rights ground, you have protection under Ontario’s Workplace Harassment and Violence regulations. For more information contact the Ministry of Labour at 1-877-202-0008.

If you are a unionized employee, your union may be able to help you address a discriminatory incident in your workplace. Talk to your union representative to find out what your union can do to assist you.

If you have questions about your entitlement to benefits for a workplace injury, you can contact the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board at 1-800-387-0750.

You can also contact the Office of the Worker Advisor at 1-800-435-8980 for service in English or 1-800-661-6365 for service in French.

If your income is low, you may qualify for assistance with workers compensation or other employment problems at a community legal clinic. To find the clinic in your area call Legal Aid at 1-800-668-8258 or 416 -979-1446.

With any employment dispute, you may want to contact a private lawyer. You can get a referral to a private lawyer through the Law Society at 1-800-268-8326 or 416-947-3330.