July 2003 - The main purpose of this report is to examine whether the Ontario Safe Schools Act and Regulations and the school board policies on discipline, known by some as “zero tolerance” policies, are having a disproportionate impact on racial minority students and students with disabilities. Advocates of zero tolerance argue that the policies are colour blind and fair because all the students who commit the same offence will be treated the same. Opponents point to other jurisdictions where there is data showing that suspensions and expulsions have a disproportionate impact on Black and other racial minority students and students with disabilities.
Nathalie Prouvez, Chief
Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights
Dear Ms Prouvez,
The Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) welcomes the opportunity to provide input into your study on the right to participation in political and public affairs, as enshrined in article 25 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and in other international human rights treaties.
I am writing to your school board to request documents, data and information that may be relevant to the Ontario Human Rights Commission’s (OHRC) Right to Read inquiry into human rights issues that affect students with reading disabilities in Ontario’s public education system.