Important amendments to the Public Service Employment Act
July 8, 2021 – Gatineau, Quebec
On June 29, Bill C-30, an Act to implement certain provisions of the budget, received Royal Assent. The bill contains amendments to the Public Service Employment Act that aim to strengthen diversity and inclusion, and address biases and barriers faced by equity-seeking groups.
The Public Service Commission of Canada (PSC) will have an important role in implementing these changes, which will support increasing diversity and levelling the playing field for all Canadians who participate in public service hiring processes.
As the provisions of the law come into force in stages, the PSC will work with key stakeholders, including departments and agencies, bargaining agents and employee diversity networks, to implement these amendments effectively.
The PSC continues to advance diversity, equity and inclusion through initiatives that include targeted student and graduate recruitment programs, an internship program for persons with disabilities, and audits and studies on the impact of the hiring process on equity-seeking groups.
The PSC is committed to increasing diversity and inclusion, and to ensuring that all those applying to public service jobs have an equal opportunity to highlight their unique talents.
“The Public Service Commission welcomes these important changes to the Public Service Employment Act and will work with its partners to eliminate bias and barriers in the hiring process to further improve the recruitment experience for all.”
– President Patrick Borbey and Commissioners Fiona Spencer and Daniel Tucker
The PSC is responsible for safeguarding a merit-based, representative and non-partisan public service that serves all Canadians, in collaboration with its stakeholders.
Equity-seeking groups are communities described in the Canadian Human Rights Act that experience collective barriers in participating in society, based on factors that include race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, and disability.
Regarding the amendments, the PSC will:
- develop policy and tools and offer guidance, in consultation with stakeholders and partners, to ensure that assessment methods are evaluated to determine whether bias and barriers exist that could disadvantage persons in equity-seeking groups and that reasonable efforts are made to mitigate these;
- be able to investigate error, omission or improper conduct resulting from bias or barriers in staffing that disadvantages persons in equity-seeking groups;
- ensure that the scope of our audits encompasses bias and barriers that disadvantage persons in equity-seeking groups;
- ensure that permanent residents of Canada benefit from the same hiring preference as Canadian citizens.
Public Service Commission of Canada
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