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Nunavut
Equal Employment Opportunity

Overview

Please review the information below and then return to the workplace harassment and violence prevention course.

Applicable Laws

The primary Nunavut law prohibiting employment discrimination, including harassment, on the basis of any protected ground is the Human Rights Act, S.Nu. 2003, c. 12.

The Occupational Health and Safety Regulations, Nun. Reg. R-003-2016 prohibits harassment and violence in the workplace.

Protected Grounds

Harassment or discrimination based on any ground set forth below is prohibited Nunavut.

  • race,
  • colour,
  • ancestry,
  • ethnic origin,
  • citizenship,
  • place of origin,
  • creed,
  • religion,
  • age,
  • disability,
  • sex,
  • sexual orientation,
  • marital status,
  • family status,
  • pregnancy,
  • lawful source of income
  • and a conviction for which a pardon has been granted.

Definitions of Harassment and Violence

Harassment

Under the Human Rights Act, S.Nu. 2003, c. 12, the term “harass” is defined to mean engaging in a course of vexatious comment or conduct that is known or ought reasonably to be known to be unwelcome. Harassment is discrimination when it is based upon a prohibited ground of discrimination.

Under the Occupational Health and Safety Regulations, Nun. Reg. R-003-2016 (OHS Regulations), “harassment” means a course of vexatious comment or conduct at a worksite that both:

  • Is known or ought reasonably to be known to be unwelcome.
  • Constitutes a threat at the work site to the health or safety of a worker.

The course of vexatious comment or conduct may be either:

  • Repeated conduct, comments, displays, actions or gestures; or
  • A single, serious occurrence of conduct, or a single, serious comment, display, action or gesture that has a lasting, harmful effect on the worker’s health or safety.

Reasonable actions taken by an employer or a supervisor relating to the management and direction of workers or the workplace (for example, discipline or performance management) are excluded from the definition of workplace harassment.

Violence

Under the OHS Regulations, “violence” means the attempted, threatened or actual conduct of a person that causes or is likely to cause injury. This includes any threatening statement or behaviour that gives a worker reasonable cause to believe that the worker is at risk of injury.

The legislation does not distinguish between violence involving co-workers and violence that originates from others who may enter the workplace.

Filing a Claim in Nunavut

A claim for employment discrimination or harassment based on a protected ground may be filed with the Nunavut Human Rights Tribunal.

A claim related to workplace violence, including harassment, may be filed with the  Nunavut Workers’ Safety and Compensation Commission (WSCC).

Retaliation Prohibited

Employer retaliation against an employee who files a complaint relating to harassment or workplace violence or is involved in the complaint process is unlawful.