Workplace sexual harassment in Northwest Territories a priority for the Government of Canada

News release

Workplace sexual harassment in Northwest Territories a priority for the Government of Canada

June 29, 2022 – Yellowknife, Northwest Territories – 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, accompanied by Michael McLeod, Member of Parliament for Northwest Territories, announced the Government of Canada’s support to the Status of Women Council of the Northwest Territories for their project Public Education & Information on Workplace Sexual Harassment.

The “Public Education & Information on Workplace Sexual Harassment” project will address workplace sexual harassment across Northwest Territories by increasing awareness through education and information resources. This will be achieved by providing information to employers and employees on workplace sexual harassment, the legal obligations of an employer, rights of employees, and how to access relevant services.

The Department of Justice Canada is providing more than $1.56 million over five years to the Status of Women Council of the Northwest Territories. Funding is provided under 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.

Today’s announcement is part of the Budget 2018’s $50 million over five years of funding 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.

Quotes

“Everyone has the right to feel safe and secure in their workplace. I am pleased to support the Public Education & Information on Workplace Sexual Harassment project, which will provide public awareness and training about workplace sexual harassment across the Northwest Territories. We all have important roles to play in creating and maintaining workspaces where everyone can feel safe and respected.”

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

“This funding will help support the great work the Status of Women Council of the Northwest Territories is doing regarding workplace sexual harassment. We are confident that this funding will help make a difference for individuals who experience sexual harassment in their workplace.”

Michael McLeod,
Member of Parliament for Northwest Territories

“Sexual harassment in the workplace occurs far too frequently. People often do not know what it is nor what their rights, obligations, and duties are. This project is intended to equip employers and employees with the knowledge and tools to prevent and address sexual harassment, and to create safe workplaces.”

Louise Elder,
Executive Director, Status of Women Council of the Northwest Territories

Quick facts

  • The primary work of the Status of Women Council of the Northwest Territories is to advance the equality of women in the Northwest Territories through public awareness, promotion, and dialogue.

  • A 2018 survey conducted by Statistics Canada found that 37% of women and 12% of men in the Northwest Territories have experienced sexual assault since the age of 15. Data from the same survey show that women were more likely than men to report experiences of unwanted sexual behaviour in their workplace, such as inappropriate sexual jokes, unwanted sexual attention, unwanted physical contact, and insults, mistreatment or being ignored based on gender and sexual orientation. Statistics Canada found 31% of women and 16% of men in the territories reported that they had experienced at least one of these unwanted sexual behaviours at work the year before the survey.

  • In 2021, half (50%) of workers in the Northwest Territories were women, 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:

Chantalle Aubertin
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada
(613) 992-6568
Chantalle.Aubertin@justice.gc.ca

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

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