“We Can Now Join The Rest Of Canada”

The province of Alberta has been a long-time loner in Canada when it comes to age discrimination.  But that has now changed.

The title of this post is a quote from an Alberta, Canada lawyer/advocate who successfully petitioned to include age as a protected class under the Alberta Human Rights Act – after a hearing in Edmonton Court of Queen’s Bench.

Peculiarly, the Act’s preamble declares “that all people are ‘equal in dignity, rights and responsibilities with regard to’ many qualities including age, [but] age is not included as a prohibited ground of discrimination in respect to goods and services or tenancies.”

In fact, “Age as grounds for discrimination has been an issue in Alberta for more than 30 years ever since the Alberta Human Rights Commission was formed in 1972,” noted the attorney.

The province has always chosen not to include age – until now, when it did not oppose the petition, and decided to follow the other Canadian provinces.

Why did it take so long for Alberta to “join the rest of Canada?”  Can anyone out there help us out?


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Richard Cohen

Richard B. Cohen is a partner in the New York City office of FisherBroyles, LLP, a national law firm. Richard Cohen has litigated and arbitrated complex corporate, commercial and employment disputes for more than 35 years, and is a trusted advisor to business owners and in-house counsel both in the United States and internationally. His clients have included Fortune 100 companies, domestic and foreign commercial and investment banks, Pacific-rim corporations and real estate development companies, as well as start-up businesses throughout the United States. Email Richard at [email protected]