Employment Equity Regulations – Communication, Consultation, Collaboration – IPG-115
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Communication, consultation and collaboration under the Legislated Employment Equity Program (LEEP).
This guideline clarifies how employers should communicate, consult and collaborate with employees, in compliance with the Employment Equity Act (the Act). It advises on the frequency of activities, as well as on the role of employees’ representatives or bargaining agents.
LEEP covers federally regulated private-sector employers, including Crown corporations and other federal organizations, that are subject to the Act.
Employers must communicate, consult and collaborate with employees. These activities should be ongoing and relate to other employment equity activities, such as the:
- collection of workforce information
- workforce analysis
- employment systems review, and
- the employment equity plan
Designated groups are “women, Aboriginal peoples, persons with disabilities and members of visible minorities.”
The Act does not define women. Guidance is available for collecting data on women (see Collection of Workforce Information).
Aboriginal peoples are “persons who are Indians, Inuit or Métis.” Indigenous peoples’ and ‘First Nations’ are more commonly used than ‘Aboriginal peoples’ and ‘Indians.’
Persons with disabilities
Persons with disabilities are “persons who have a long-term or recurring physical, mental, sensory, psychiatric or learning impairment and who
- consider themselves to be disadvantaged in employment by reason of that impairment, or
- believe that [an] employer or potential employer is likely to consider them to be disadvantaged in employment by reason of that impairment,
and includes persons whose functional limitations owing to their impairment have been accommodated in their current job or workplace.”
Members of visible minorities
Members of visible minorities are “persons, other than Aboriginal peoples, who are non-Caucasian in race or non-white in colour.”
Employee means a “person who is employed by the employer, but does not include a person employed on a temporary or casual basis for fewer than 12 weeks in a calendar year.”
Representatives means “persons who have been designated by employees to act as their representatives, or […] bargaining agents, where bargaining agents represent employees”.
Employers must inform their employees about:
- the purpose of employment equity
- the measures undertaken or planned to implement employment equity
- the progress made in implementing employment equity
Employers must invite employees’ representatives, including bargaining agents where applicable, to provide their views on:
- the assistance that the representatives can provide in implementing employment equity and in communicating to employees on related matters
- the preparation, implementation and revision of the employment equity plan
Employers and employees’ representatives must collaborate in the preparation, implementation and revision of the employment equity plan.
Employers must establish and maintain records of the activities undertaken to inform employees and the information provided to them.
Employers should communicate, consult and collaborate frequently with employees and their representatives when they are conducting their employment equity activities (see recommended activities related in the Employment Equity Task - Meet your Communication, Consultation, and Recordkeeping Requirements). Otherwise, employers should do so at least once per year.
Employers should ensure to take the views of members of designated groups into account in the consultations.
Employers should invite bargaining agents to participate in the consultations and encourage their collaboration, or designate someone to participate on their behalf. Consultation and collaboration are not forms of co-management.
When employees’ representatives or bargaining agents do not collaborate, employers should record their attempts to engage them and reasons given for non participation.
Further guidance on communication, consultation and collaboration is provided here.
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