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Taking it local: An update on human rights (Ottawa)

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The Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC)
and the City of Ottawa invite you to join us at:

Taking it local: An update on human rights

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Ottawa City Hall
110 Laurier Avenue West, Ottawa, Ontario K1P 1J1 

This FREE one-day event features plenary and concurrent sessions on a variety of human rights topics.

Featured speakers include guests from
the Ontario Human Rights Commission, the City of Ottawa and other community leaders.

Breakfast, lunch and light refreshments will be provided.


This event has reached capacity.
Registration is now closed.

Contact Alicia Carr at 416-314-4526 to be added to the waitlist.



Opening remarks

Morning plenary:

Presentation: Identifying and overcoming racism and racial discrimination
Learn about the many ways racial discrimination and racial harassment can harm individuals and communities. This session will also equip you with some critical tools to identify and overcome this type of discrimination.

Morning concurrent sessions: (choose one when you register)

C1: Human rights essentials (This session is FULL)

This introductory session offers a primer on human rights, including an overview of Ontario’s Human Rights Code, the grounds and social areas the Code covers, forms of discrimination, the duty to accommodate, and how Ontario’s human rights system works.

C2: Francophones, language and discrimination
This session will explore the relationship between the Ontario Human Rights Code, language-based discrimination and French-language minority rights protected under other laws. Participants are encouraged to discuss examples of Code-related discrimination that Francophones sometimes experience at work, in housing or retail contexts, or when accessing other services like education. [Delivered in French, print materials available in English]

C3: Updates on disability and the duty to accommodate
Learn about new developments in the law regarding disability accommodation in employment, housing and services (including education). Understand your rights and obligations under the Ontario Human Rights Code, including how to respond appropriately to accommodation requests. This session will draw on the OHRC’s newly updated Policy on ableism and discrimination based on disability as well as its Policy on preventing discrimination based on mental health disabilities and addictions.

C4: Systemic discrimination (This session is FULL)
Organizations often have rules or procedures that may not appear to discriminate or intend to discriminate, but that negatively affect or cause barriers for groups who identify with Human Rights Code grounds. Learn about ways to identify and rework these rules, and the importance of collecting human rights-based data. Participants should already have a basic knowledge of the Ontario Human Rights Code.

Afternoon concurrent sessions: (choose one when you register)

C5: Human rights, gender identity and gender expression

This introductory session features an overview of the OHRC’s Policy on preventing discrimination because of gender identity and gender expression. Learn about the two newest grounds of the Human Rights Code, and what the law requires you to do to accommodate people with diverse gender identities and expressions.

C6: Competing human rights and how to address them
When one right appears to conflict with another, what do we do? In this session, you will learn how to identify when rights are competing, and how to analyze and resolve this conflict. You’ll learn about the OHRC’s Policy on competing human rights, and how to apply its framework to your own scenario. Participants should already have a basic knowledge of the Ontario Human Rights Code.

C7: Preventing discrimination based on creed
Learn about the OHRC’s Policy on preventing discrimination based on creed.  Explore examples of creed-based discrimination as well as how to accommodate creed beliefs and practices in employment, housing and service contexts. 

C8: Human rights and family status
What is protected under the Code ground of family status? What are ways discrimination based on family status happens? What responsibilities do employers, housing and service providers have to accommodate family status-related needs? This session will focus on the OHRC’s Policy and guidelines on discrimination because of family status as well as relevant case studies.

Afternoon plenary:

This session will be delivered by presenters from Indigenous communities. The session description will follow.  

Human rights town hall (question and answer session)