Employment Equity Act (S.C. 1995, c. 44)

Act current to 2015-10-27 and last amended on 2014-11-01. Previous Versions

Employment Equity Act

S.C. 1995, c. 44

Assented to 1995-12-15

An Act respecting employment equity

Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate and House of Commons of Canada, enacts as follows:


Marginal note:Short title

 This Act may be cited as the Employment Equity Act.


Marginal note:Purpose of Act

 The purpose of this Act is to achieve equality in the workplace so that no person shall be denied employment opportunities or benefits for reasons unrelated to ability and, in the fulfilment of that goal, to correct the conditions of disadvantage in employment experienced by women, aboriginal peoples, persons with disabilities and members of visible minorities by giving effect to the principle that employment equity means more than treating persons in the same way but also requires special measures and the accommodation of differences.


Marginal note:Definitions

 In this Act,

“aboriginal peoples”

« autochtones »

“aboriginal peoples” means persons who are Indians, Inuit or Métis;

“Canadian workforce”

« population apte au travail »

“Canadian workforce” means all persons in Canada of working age who are willing and able to work;


« président »

“Chairperson” means the chairperson of the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal;


« Commission »

“Commission” means the Canadian Human Rights Commission established under section 26 of the Canadian Human Rights Act;

“compliance officer”

« agent d’application »

“compliance officer” means a person designated as an employment equity compliance review officer pursuant to subsection 22(3);

“designated groups”

« groupes désignés »

“designated groups” means women, aboriginal peoples, persons with disabilities and members of visible minorities;

“members of visible minorities”

« minorités visibles »

“members of visible minorities” means persons, other than aboriginal peoples, who are non-Caucasian in race or non-white in colour;


« ministre »

“Minister” means such member of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada as is designated by the Governor in Council as the Minister for the purposes of this Act;


“Panel”[Repealed, 1998, c. 9, s. 37]

“persons with disabilities”

« personnes handicapées »

“persons with disabilities” means persons who have a long-term or recurring physical, mental, sensory, psychiatric or learning impairment and who

  • (a) consider themselves to be disadvantaged in employment by reason of that impairment, or

  • (b) believe that a employer or potential employer is likely to consider them to be disadvantaged in employment by reason of that impairment,

and includes persons whose functional limitations owing to their impairment have been accommodated in their current job or workplace;


Version anglaise seulement

“prescribed” means prescribed by the regulations;

“private sector employer”

« employeur du secteur privé »

“private sector employer” means any person who employs one hundred or more employees on or in connection with a federal work, undertaking or business as defined in section 2 of the Canada Labour Code and includes any corporation established to perform any function or duty on behalf of the Government of Canada that employs one hundred or more employees, but does not include

  • (a) a person who employs employees on or in connection with a work, undertaking or business of a local or private nature in Yukon, the Northwest Territories or Nunavut, or

  • (b) a departmental corporation as defined in section 2 of the Financial Administration Act;


« représentants »

“representatives” means

  • (a) those persons who have been designated by employees to act as their representatives, or

  • (b) bargaining agents, where bargaining agents represent the employees;


« tribunal »

“Tribunal” means an Employment Equity Review Tribunal established by subsection 28(1).

  • 1993, c. 28, s. 78;
  • 1995, c. 44, s. 3;
  • 1998, c. 9, s. 37, c. 15, s. 25;
  • 2002, c. 7, s. 162(E).