About the Workplace Equity Program

Employment equity:

  • encourages the establishment of working conditions that are free from barriers
  • seeks to correct conditions of disadvantage in employment, and
  • promotes the principle that it requires special measures to accommodate differences for the 4 designated groups in Canada

The Employment Equity Act (the Act) identifies the designated groups as:

  • women
  • Indigenous peoplesFootnote 1
  • persons with disabilities
  • members of visible minorities

The Act applies to the following industries and workplaces:

  • federally regulated industries
  • Crown corporations
  • other federal organizations with 100 employees or more
  • portions of the federal public administration identified in:
    • Schedules I or IV and V of the Financial Administration Act, and
    • by order of the Governor in Council, which includes the Canadian Forces, and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP)

The Labour Program ensures that the following employers understand the Act and its requirements so they can meet their obligations:

The Legislated Employment Equity Program (LEEP)

This program ensures that federally regulated private-sector employers covered by the Act, report annually on:

  • the representation of the 4 designated groups in their workplaces, and
  • the steps they have taken to achieve full representation

The Canadian Human Rights Commission receives these reports from the Labour Program. The Commission is responsible for ensuring that employers comply with the requirements of the Act.

For more information about the LEEP's reporting requirements and compliance policy, consult: Legislated Employment Equity Program.

Federal Contractors Program (FCP)

This program ensures that contractors who do business with the Government of Canada implement employment equity in their workplace.

The FCP covers provincially-regulated employers with the following conditions:

  • they must have 100 or more employees, and
  • they must have a federal government contract for goods and services of $1 million or more

For more information about the FCP's requirements and compliance policy, consult: Federal Contractors Program.

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