Government of Canada supports initiative to address workplace sexual harassment and improve access to justice in New Brunswick
March 31, 2021 - Fredericton, New Brunswick - Department of Justice 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 workplaces where everyone – no matter their gender identity or expression – can be safe, respected and able to focus on their work is a priority for the Government of Canada.
Today, the Honourable David Lametti, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, announced the Government of Canada’s support to Public Legal Education and Information Service of New Brunswick (PLEIS-NB) for their Preventing Workplace Sexual Harassment of Vulnerable Populations project. With this project, the PLEIS-NB is supporting employers and individuals to address and prevent workplace sexual harassment, specifically amongst vulnerable populations including LGBTQ2+ groups.
The Department of Justice Canada is providing more than $1.94 million over five years to PLEIS-NB. Funding is provided under both the Justice Partnership and Innovation Program, which supports initiatives that work toward our goal of ensuring an accessible, efficient and fair system of justice for all, as well as the Legal Aid Program.
The preventing Workplace Sexual Harassment of Vulnerable Populations project involves holding consultations and completing research to support the development of tools and strategies to address workplace sexual harassment. This includes public education programs, workplace training resources, virtual courses, and community activities. The resources being developed are being shared with various stakeholders across the province, including employers, employees, unions, as well as community and business organizations.
They are also developing a workplace sexual harassment legal advice delivery model that will include a roster of trained legal professionals and access to a hotline/referral service for anyone experiencing sexual harassment in the workplace.
Today’s announcement is part of Budget 2018’s funding of $50 million over five years to address workplace sexual harassment. 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.
“Everyone has the right to feel safe and secure in their workplace. I am proud to support the Public Legal Education and Information Service of New Brunswick project, as it aims to address and prevent workplace sexual harassment of people in vulnerable populations such as LGBTQ2+ groups.”
The Honourable David Lametti, P.C., Q.C., M.P.
Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada
“Public Legal Education and Information Service of New Brunswick has been a leader in providing public legal education and information to residents of New Brunswick for three decades. Their work has allowed them to build a strong and extensive network with partners, stakeholders and organizations across the province. This makes them well-placed to support those experiencing sexual violence and harassment in the workplace.”
Member of Parliament for Madawaska – Restigouche
“Sexual harassment occurs far too often, and it impacts the health, safety and well-being of those involved. Thanks to funding from Justice Canada, the Public Legal Education and Information Service of New Brunswick (PLEIS-NB), in collaboration with the New Brunswick Human Rights Commission (NBHRC), is pleased to formally launch our five-year initiative to address and prevent sexual harassment in New Brunswick workplaces. We started with a consultation process that involved listening to the voices of particularly vulnerable populations, such as members of the LGBTQ2+ community. So far, we have created a website called "Safer Places NB", developed training materials for facilitated online training, and offered self-guided online training.”
Acting Associate Director of Public Legal Education and Information Service of New Brunswick
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.
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Office of the Minister of Justice
Department of Justice Canada
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