2021/2022 Deputy Minister Commitments on Diversity and Inclusion
The Federal Public Service is stronger and most effective when we reflect the diversity of Canada’s populations we serve. While progress has been made in recent years to achieve gender parity in the Deputy Minister community, there is more progress to be made in increasing representation of Black people and other racialized groups, Indigenous People, and persons with disabilities. At the enterprise level, strong partnerships are in place between departments, the Office of the Chief Human Resources Officer, the Public Service Commission and the Canada School of Public Service on horizontal initiatives, such as data analysis, training and development programs as well as recruitment.
To further expand on actions meant to tackle racism and improve representation at all levels, the April 1, 2020 Treasury Board Directive on Employment Equity, Diversity and Inclusion requires Deputies to designate a senior official responsible for developing a comprehensive action plan, in collaboration with equity-deserving groups that will explain how barriers to inclusion will be identified, removed and prevented, and that:
- Establishes a baseline of where the Department is at today;
- Sets out objectives, to increase representation through recruitment and promotion within the organization and to respond to Public Service Employee Survey (PSES) results related to the perception of harassment and discrimination;
- Explains how equity-deserving groups are engaged in the plan’s development and will continue to be; and
- Is updated annually, and results reported publicly.
Targets play an important role in driving organizations to achieve measurable change in advancing diversity and inclusion objectives. As a continuous goal, departments must consider their Workforce Availability statistics as the floor and not the ceiling with regards to diversity targets.
Deputies will be required to update the staffing plan demonstrating the rate of hiring and promotions of individuals at the executive and non-executive levels, who self-identify in at least one of the EE groups, which aims to close the gap within the next 3 years, with demonstrable and steady progress made annually.
In keeping with the Treasury Board Directive and the Performance Management Program’s Corporate Priorities, Deputies must also add focus on efforts and results to build a more inclusive and diverse workforce. Therefore, they are to select three measures from the list below that will enable their leadership teams to advance measureable change in their organizations. As such, they are encouraged to select these measures from one or more themes that go beyond what is currently being done in their organizations, and recognize the different scope of authority at various executive levels within the organization. In reporting on these commitments, Departmental management teams will need to provide clear and measureable results on what the measures have accomplished in achieving progress to address under-representation.
Changing the Public Service Culture
Establish a culture of inclusiveness that values diversity and will combat racism and address systemic barriers
- Fostering inclusive leadership by:
- Ensuring all executives complete anti-racism and unconscious bias training by March 2021; and
- Engaging senior management tables on anti-racism via facilitated group discussions on unconscious bias and systemic racism to start the de-stigmatization of discussions on racism and particularly anti-Black racism.
- Providing adequate support by:
- Ensuring that employee mental health and wellbeing supports are culturally sensitive and adequately tailored to address issues of racism, discrimination and hate in the workplace; and
- Ensuring departmental Ombudsman Offices are trained and equipped to create safe spaces for employees facing racism or experiencing discrimination. Also, providing concrete tools for employees to respond to micro-aggressions in the workplace.
- Engaging in dialogue that will de-stigmatize discussions on racism and systemic barriers by:
- Hosting monthly organizational fireside chats where subject matter experts deliver relevant presentations on racism, ableism or other discrimination-related topics;
- Developing a value statement on anti-racism and ableism and proactively seeking opportunities to talk about the value of diversity and inclusion;
- Promoting and supporting the planning of organizational initiatives, celebrations and respectful incorporation of diverse histories and cultures into the workplace; and
- Frequently meeting departmental employee equity committees and/or networks and inviting representatives of these committees and/or networks to attend meetings of the senior executive on a regular basis in order for a diversity of perspectives to be considered.
Reflecting Diversity and Promoting Inclusion
Increase the representation of Black, other racialized and Indigenous People as well as persons with disabilities within all levels of the organization
- Actively supporting the recruitment and retention of Black people and other racialized groups, Indigenous People, and persons with disabilities by:
- Establishing clear targets to increase the representation of Black people and other racialized groups, Indigenous People, and persons with disabilities within all levels of the organization through recruitment, with particular attention to and especially key organizational communities such as human resources and communications;
- Partnering with equity-deserving communities to attract and retain new talent that reflects Canada’s diversity;
- Reviewing and ensuring that hiring processes are culturally sensitive and driven to remove barriers to appointment for Black people and other racialized groups, Indigenous People, and persons with disabilities;
- Supporting non-imperative staffing and language training for managerial positions where Black people and other racialized groups, Indigenous People, and persons with disabilities are being considered for appointment.
- Actively supporting the promotion, sponsorship and career development of Black people and other racialized groups, Indigenous People, and persons with disabilities by:
- Establishing clear targets to increase the representation of Black employees and other racialized employees, Indigenous employees, and employees with disabilities within all levels of the organization through promotions, with particular attention to and especially key business lines, including human resources and communications;
- ADM or DM-level sponsoring of Black employees and other racialized employees, Indigenous employees, and employees with disabilities who are identified by their managers as high-potential for executive roles or to advance to the ADM level;
- Reviewing and ensuring that talent and performance management processes are culturally sensitive and driven to remove systemic barriers to Black employees and other racialized employees, Indigenous employees, and employees with disabilities;
- Supporting language training for career development of Black employees and other racialized employees, Indigenous employees, and employees with disabilities;
- Adopting the Aboriginal Leadership Development Initiative (ALDI) operating at Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada / Indigenous Services Canada to identify and cultivate Indigenous talent;
- Implementing a mentoring program for Black employees and other racialized employees, Indigenous employees, and employees with disabilities within the organization and requiring that all DMs and ADMs shadow mentees that belong to one of the aforementioned equity-deserving groups.
Updating Policy and Programs: Our Future Workplace
Ensure that internal and external policies and programs are inclusive and free of systemic racism and barriers
- Reviewing and adapting all external public oriented policies and programs to ensure they meet the government requirements for accessibility, equity and transparency by:
- Identifying and addressing systemic racism and barriers to accessibility and disability inclusion within those policies;
- Ensuring transparency and accessibility of departmental Grants and Contributions’ programs with specific initiatives targeted at equity-deserving groups and individuals;
- Reporting on the year over year incremental departmental measures in place to support the intent of s. 10.1, 10.2 and 11 of the Indigenous Languages Act if applicable.
- Establishing and overseeing a review of all internal systems, policies, programs and initiatives by:
- Setting up panels to hear how existing programs and policies are being experienced by equity-deserving groups and what they think needs to be addressed;
- Reviewing HR, Procurement, Communications policies, programs and initiatives using Gender-based Analysis Plus (GBA+) and considering various identity factors including race, ethnicity, religion, age, sexual orientation, gender identification and expression as well as and mental or physical disability to identify systemic racism and barriers to accessibility and disability inclusion;
- Ensuring Black employees, other racialized employees, Indigenous employees and employees with disabilities have membership and their view represented at executive tables, advisory councils, occupational health committees and other horizontal committees to foster diverse perspectives on internal policies, programs and operations.
- Increasing accessibility internally by:
- Ensuring new systems, including internally developed or procured hardware and software, meet modern accessibility standards;
- Requiring that any documentation distributed across the organization (e.g. presentations, videos, briefing notes and papers, publications) be accessible and ensuring staff have the necessary training to achieve this goal;
- Addressing systemic discrimination and barriers to accessibility and disability inclusion within all internal operational policies, programs and initiatives;
- Developing and communicating proactive, streamlined workplace accommodation processes and practices in the organization, including for those working from home, as well as putting in place the necessary supports for employees and their managers.
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