CRANKY this morning due to the 18 calls from a fax machine to our land line starting at 5:29 this morning. And where was the call from? (613) area code, of course – some Ottawa bureaucrat faxing up the wrong number when he got into work. GRR.
I’m feeling anti-Ottawa today really because I am anti-Harper. I actually quite like Ottawa and I am a fan of civil servants (being one myself) so take that first paragraph as grumpy Jenn with not enough sleep. But aside from the census debacle, read on about Harper’s latest plans to nix employment equity in the public service. I get so sick and tired of hearing people say crap like “jobs should be awarded based on merit” and leave it at that. We (Canadian society) actually decided that we wanted a more representative public service. And it’s not as if employment equity legislation has been running around awarding jobs to complete idiots in place of some highly qualified white male.
Employment equity came out of a 1984 judicial commission and the purpose of the Act (passed in 1986) was 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.
So apparently Harper and our lovely Immigration Minister Jason Kenney don’t think that people of colour, women and persons with disabilities are any different than anyone else in terms of the challenges they face in the job market. Oi vey – what decade is it? These groups of people (visible minorities especially) are treated unequally when it comes to the public service and because they are not fairly represented we should do things to improve that. I actually like how Donald Oliver (a conservative senator) explains it.
And for those of you who are Tories (or were Tories since the current conservatives are not), one of the saddest things is that the original Employment Equity Act was passed and promoted under the Mulroney government. I am no fan of Lyin’ Brian but I can give props where they are due and at least previous Tory governments weren’t evil. Our current conservative one seems pretty demonic though. I really feel that the longer Harper is in power, the more he is dismantling a number of core Canadian institutions and approaches to how society should work. Depressing. Just depressing.