Government of Canada supports a province-wide initiative to address workplace sexual harassment in Saskatchewan

News release

September 10, 2019 - Saskatoon, Saskatchewan - Department of Justice Canada

In Canada, all individuals have the right to a safe workplace with fair treatment for all. Sexual harassment impacts the health and well-being of those involved, as well as their ability to perform their jobs to the best of their ability. Creating and maintaining safe workplaces where everyone – no matter their gender or gender identity – can be safe, respected and able to focus on their work and career is a priority for the Government of Canada.

Today, the Honourable David Lametti, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, announced nearly $1.6 million over five years in funding for a province-wide strategy to address sexual harassment in the workplace in Saskatchewan. A partnership of stakeholders, including the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission, the University of Saskatchewan - College of Law, the Public Legal Education Association of Saskatchewan, the Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce and the Saskatoon Industry-Education Council have committed to undertake collaborative action.

The strategy to address sexual harassment in the workplace will provide trauma-informed materials and education to those affected by sexual harassment in the workplace; create an evidence-based tool kit and online training tools that will be promoted at community outreach events including workshops and seminars; train employees, employers, and business leaders in person and via webinars; and establish strategic partnerships with high-profile business leaders and community champions to enable enduring outcomes.

Quotes

“Canadians deserve a workplace that is free from harassment and violence and where unacceptable behaviours are not tolerated. I am proud of the Department of Justice’s support this province-wide project that will help people in Saskatchewan access clear information about their rights when it comes to workplace sexual harassment.”

The Honourable David Lametti, P.C., Q.C., M.P.
Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

“Workplace sexual harassment is a pervasive problem in virtually every sector of the economy, affecting all professions in Saskatchewan. We thank the Government of Canada for its commitment to addressing this important issue, and for funding for this project which will help prevent workplace sexual harassment in our province. We look forward to working with business leaders to raise public awareness, to dispelling myths, to giving employers and employees the tools they need, and to supporting those who have experienced, or are experiencing, sexual harassment in the workplace.”

Norma Gunningham-Kapphahn, J.D. (LLB)
Executive Director, Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission

“Our mission is to make Saskatchewan the best place to live and work. Together, we can combat sexual harassment in the workplace and implement programs and services that best reflect the needs of the Saskatchewan business community.”

Michele Geres,
Director of Programs, Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce

Quick facts

  • Today’s announcement is part of Budget 2018’s $50 million over five years of funding to address sexual harassment in the workplace. Of this amount, $25 million is dedicated to organizations so that they can increase their ability to provide legal advice and information to support complainants of sexual harassment in the workplace. Another $25 million is dedicated to organizations to enable them to provide public legal education and information to workers. Through both initiatives, the Government of Canada is helping organizations assist complainants and take a stand against sexual harassment in the workplace.

  • In 2018, Statistics Canada released a study on all forms of harassment in Canadian workplaces. Statistics Canada found 19% of women and 13% of men reported that they had experienced harassment in their workplace. Women were more likely to report sexual harassment in their workplaces.

  • In 2016, 48% of workers in Canada were women (Statistics Canada, 2017), and in a survey conducted by Employment and Social Development Canada in 2017, 94% of respondents who reported experiencing sexual harassment in the workplace were women.

Associated links

Contacts

For more information, media may contact:

Rachel Rappaport
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Justice
613-992-6568
Rachel.rappaport@justice.gc.ca

Media Relations
Department of Justice Canada
613-957-4207
media@justice.gc.ca 

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