Self-declaring. Because your perspective counts.
Wondering if you should self-declare as a person with a disability when applying for a job with the Government of Canada?
If you have a disability and choose to self-declare, you’ll:
- lead the way to change
- make a difference by sharing your unique talents, perspectives and ideas
- help more people with disabilities to bring their skills to Canada’s public service
- help create a diverse and inclusive public service that is truly representative of Canada
Because diversity includes disabilities.
Your next job starts here
Are you interested in a career in science?
Apply to the Careers in Biology for Persons with Disabilities inventory by November 30, 2022. Our biologists play a key role in improving Canadians’ lives, protecting their health, and providing cutting-edge research to support our environment and industries.
Who can self-declare
The Employment Equity Act identifies 4 designated groups: women, Aboriginal peoples, persons with disabilities and members of visible minorities. Persons with disabilities have a long-term or recurring physical, mental, sensory, psychiatric or learning impairment and:
- consider themselves to be disadvantaged in employment by reason of that impairment
- believe that an employer or potential employer is likely to consider them to be disadvantaged in employment by reason of that impairment
- in some cases, have been accommodated in their current job or workplace
Disabilities, whether visible or non-visible, include:
- co-ordination or dexterity (difficulty using hands or arms, for example, grasping or handling a stapler or using a keyboard)
- mobility (difficulty moving around, for example, from one office to another or up and down stairs)
- blind or visual impairment (unable to see or difficulty seeing)
- deaf or hard of hearing (unable to hear or difficulty in hearing)
- speech impairment (unable to speak or difficulty speaking and being understood)
- other disability (including learning disabilities, developmental disabilities and all other types of disabilities)
When to self-declare
Self-declaration is voluntary
Self-declaration is voluntary and highly encouraged. Some job opportunities are open specifically to people with disabilities. To be considered for these opportunities, you need to self-declare. By self-declaring, you can fully demonstrate your skills and abilities, and help increase the representation of persons with disabilities in the federal public service.
Hear from our employees and show your strengths
“The Employment Opportunity for Students with Disabilities changed my life. Initiatives like this not only assist students with disabilities in their hunt for a job within the public service, they are steppingstones to a more inclusive GC.”
Junior Communications Advisor and Student, Public Service Commission of Canada
“I was nervous when I started, but my manager believed in me and trusted me with important deliverables, and it felt good!”
Analyst, Office of Public Service Accessibility
“Today I am in a position to make a difference and to influence culture change by raising awareness of accessibility, equity and inclusion. I’d like to see other public servants with disabilities follow similar career paths.”
Business Analyst, Canadian Heritage
To learn more about…
“I first joined the Public Service Commission of Canada as a student while completing my undergraduate studies at Carleton University. This was my first-ever government job opportunity, and I was so excited to start.”
Andy always knew he wanted to work in communications for the public service. “As soon as I graduated from high school, I started applying and continued to apply year after year, but I wasn’t hearing back from my applications and I began to feel defeated.”
“I was browsing through job opportunities one day and something stood out to me. It read ‘Employment Opportunity for Students with Disabilities. ’ At first, I was hesitant because my disability isn’t visible. I was scared to self-declare. But I knew I had a disability, so I took the risk and I’m so happy I did. Within a month, I was contacted and that’s where it all took off.”
With his degree in communications, Andy really enjoys working as a communications officer, whether it’s helping with social media requests, liaising with the web team, or coordinating visuals with the multimedia team. “I’m able to have my hands in everything and the work is always evolving―that’s something I really love about my job.”
“The Employment Opportunity for Students with Disabilities changed my life. Initiatives like this not only assist students with disabilities in their hunt for a job within the public service, they are steppingstones to a more inclusive GC. We all have something to contribute and when everyone is given equal opportunity to do so, we become a stronger force.”
Read Andy’s full story
“There is a general belief that the process to get into government is difficult. I was convinced that there would be extra barriers for me, but in fact, my experience was just the opposite!
The process started with an informal interview which made me feel comfortable. For me it really shows when I am nervous, so this format allowed me to articulate my educational and work credentials, and to really showcase myself as a professional.”
AnaLori is an analyst with the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat’s Office of Public Service Accessibility. She joined the public service through the Federal Internship Program for Canadians with Disabilities .
“I was nervous when I started, but my manager believed in me and trusted me with important deliverables, and it felt good!
I joined the federal public service because I thought I could make a difference. I am so proud of what I’ve achieved so far. I worked with the Canada School of Public Service to develop a course to help prevent discrimination and harassment in the workplace, now a mandatory course for managers. The day it became available online I actually cried! It felt so good to have contributed to make the world a little bit more inclusive for others.”
AnaLori has a master’s degree in Critical Disability Studies from Carleton University. Joining the federal public service was never something she considered, but when a professor told her about an opportunity for someone with her background, she made the leap.
“I would recommend a career in the public service to anyone, especially if you don’t want to be stuck. There are so many departments and agencies and different types of jobs, the opportunities are endless!
Personally, I can’t possibly imagine working anywhere else!”
“Today I am in a position to make a difference and to influence a culture change by raising awareness of accessibility, equity and inclusion. I’d like to see other public servants with disabilities follow similar career paths.”
Angèle knows firsthand how extra challenging it can be to integrate into a new workplace. “I was having a hard time fitting in when I first started working for the public service. I was gradually losing my hearing but didn’t want to acknowledge it. The day I was approved for a hearing service dog I finally came to terms with my condition and things improved.”
When her first companion Candy started following her everywhere, things started to change for Angèle. “I decided to contact the department’s equity office for support; one thing led to another and I ended up coordinating workplace accommodation requests for the department!”
From that moment on, Angèle worked on several accessibility and disability initiatives, helping to prevent and remove barriers for public servants with disabilities.
Her dedication to inclusivity goes well beyond the workplace. In her everyday life Angèle uses her service dog Mylo as a teaching tool to raise awareness and educate people. “It’s important to have frank conversations about inclusion and I love how Mylo allows me to engage with people everywhere I go.”
When asked if the federal government is ready to welcome more people with disabilities, Angèle says, “I think the work environment still needs some adjustments to be truly accessible. The public service needs the participation of persons with disabilities to help to realize such a significant cultural change. We need to work together, and to be open to learning from each other.”
- Self-declaring for Government of Canada jobs
- Accessibility Strategy for the Public Service of Canada
- Employment equity
- Building a representative public service
- Assessment accommodation
- Working for the Government of Canada: the duty to accommodate and your right to non-discrimination
- Accessibility in the public service
Report a problem or mistake on this page
- Date modified: