This policy is a complete revision and update of the OHRC’s original Policy on creed and the accommodation of religious observances first published in 1996. It sets out the OHRC’s position on creed and accommodating observances related to a person's creed.
The policy offers Ontario citizens and organizations ways to address and prevent discrimination and conflict based on creed in an informed, proactive and principled way. In keeping with the Preamble to the Code, this policy is also designed to:
- Promote recognition of the inherent dignity and worth of people of diverse creed faiths, whatever their creed
- Provide equal rights and opportunities without discrimination and harassment because of creed
- Create a climate of understanding and mutual respect, so that people of diverse creed faith feel they belong in the community and can fully contribute to it.
The policy can help people who face discrimination based on creed to understand and assert their rights. The policy can also help employers, unions and other vocational associations, and housing and service providers to understand and meet their legal responsibilities under the Code to prevent and address discrimination based on creed.
Organizations can also use the policy to develop their own training materials and anti-discrimination and harassment policies.
The analysis and many of the examples in this policy are based on research, tribunal and court cases involving creed, as well as the OHRC’s consultations.
See Appendix A for more about the purpose of OHRC policies.