Duty to Accommodate
Manitoba Human Rights Code – Duty to Accommodate
At Brandon University, we recognize our responsibility to address and remove barriers that staff and faculty may encounter based on the protected characteristics identified in the Manitoba Human Rights Code. By doing so, we are meeting our duty to accommodate.
The Manitoba Human Rights Code (“The Code”) prohibits an employer from discriminating against a person based on various characteristics including physical or mental disability, family status, religious belief and gender identity. For a full list of the protected characteristics, please visit the Manitoba Human Rights Commission website. Discriminating also means a failure to provide a reasonable accommodation for the needs of a person when they are based on the protected characteristics.* As the employer, it is our obligation to ‘level the playing field’ through reasonable accommodations so that all employees have equal access to opportunities at work. The Manitoba Human Rights Commission has developed a helpful guideline regarding Reasonable Accommodation in the Workplace.
No two accommodations look the same. Accommodations can take many forms; from adjusting work start times to ergonomic workstation adjustments. Should these types of accommodations be medically required, Human Resources will request supporting medical documentation to accompany the Accommodation Request form.
It is important to remember that an accommodation request is based on a need not a want. While an employee may view their want as a need, they do not get to choose their accommodation. As the employer, we require supporting documentation from practitioners or physicians and we will often request subsequent information to assist us in determining what is practicably reasonable.
To help better understand workplace accommodations, take the time to review the following policy, procedure and supporting forms:
- Workplace Accommodation Policy
- Workplace Accommodation Procedure
- Accommodation Request Form
- Accommodation Plan Checklist (for managers)
- Workplace Accommodation Plan
Return to Work – Duty to Accommodate
In cases where an employee is set to return to work after an illness or injury, there are often restrictions or limitations as part of their return to work plan. Because we are required to ensure the employee does not exceed their limitations and possibly risk further injury or setbacks to their recovery, Human Resources will ask for medical documentation outlining any restrictions prior to the employee’s return to work.