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Know Your Rights Blog: July 2011 Archives

Episode 5

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Thus far in the series, we've been talking about guaranteed freedoms. Stuff The Charter lets us do. Freedoms like religion, expression, association, life and liberty. For this week's show, it's time to tweak our focus a bit. Not what The Charter allows us to do, but what it protects us from.

Check this out...

The Charter of Rights and Freedoms Section 15. (1) - Every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination and, in particular, without discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability.

Wordy, and weighty. How can we possibly attack all of that in 27 minutes and 30 seconds? We can't, of course. 

So we're going to break it down over the next three weeks. In a couple of weeks, you'll hear the "freedom from discrimination based on race, origin, creed" episode. Next week, it's "freedom from discrimination based on mental or physical disability".

This week, as you can tell by that graphic up there, we're presenting "the right to be free of discrimination based on sex or age".

Sex (gender) will be examined in an interview with the CBC's Executive Vice President of English Services, Kirstine Stewart. We'll also talk "SlutWalks" with Lenore Lukasik-Foss. She is Director of the Sexual Assault Centre in Hamilton, Ontario.

Gender discrimination against males will also be explored in our "Meanwhile..." segment. Hear that here!

Then, our attention turns to age discrimination with Raymond Hall, an Air Canada pilot who was forced to retire at age 60. Then the other end of the age spectrum and someone who is discriminated against for being too young; Churchill, Manitoba MP, Niki Ashton.

(Check out The Fine Print for some background information on this week's show.)

Meanwhile, in Nelson, B.C....

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Ronald Morrison graduated from a senior care-aide program in 2007 -- the only man in his class. There was no shortage of jobs when he began looking for work. But when he applied for a position at a local seniors home, he was turned down. Mr. Morrison then found work in another seniors home. But lost that job when the home was taken over by the company that originally turned him down for a job. Mr. Morrison took his case to the BC Human Rights Tribunal. The tribunal found Morrison had equal or superior qualifications to other applicants. They also noted that when Morrison was applying for work, only women were hired as residential care aides. They decided that the managers relied on stereotypical assumptions to unfairly deny Morrison a job and awarded him nearly $12,000.

What do you think? How big an issue is gender discrimination against males in Canada?

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Just in time for campire sing-a-long season...

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