The Canadian Human Rights Act Now Applies to First Nation Governments
The Federal Government repealed Section 67 of the Canadian Human Rights Act in 2008. Section 67 of the Canadian Human Rights Act provided as follows:
"Nothing in this Act affects any provision of the Indian Act or any provision made under or pursuant to that Act."
The effect of this provision was that decisions made or actions taken by First Nation Band Councils were exempt from the application of the Canadian Human Rights Act and as a result, First Nations people living or working on a reserve are unable to file complaints with the Canadian Human Rights Commission alleging discrimination on a prohibited ground arising from actions taken or decisions made under or pursuant to the Indian Act.
This is no longer the case.
First Nation Councils must now ensure that any decisions or actions taken comply with the Canadian Human Rights Act. This means that it is against the law for any Employer or Service Provider that falls within Federal Jurisdiction to discriminate on the basis of:
- National or Ethnic origin
- Sex (includes pregnancy)
- Marital Status Family Status
- Sexual Orientation
- Pardoned Conviction
- Disability (physical or mental, including drug or alcohol dependence)