Diversity Briefs (December 18, 2000)

FEDS COMMIT TO DIVERSITY ACTION PLAN
Ottawa — Earlier this year, the federal government pledged to act upon the recommendations of a task force called to explore the under-representation of visible minorities in the public service. The government has committed to set external recruiting goals for visible minorities at one in five new hires over the next three years, and set similar standards for promotion to senior ranks for the next five years.

POLICE NEED MORE DIVERSITY
Toronto — Police departments must “outreach like crazy” to recruit more people from visible minority groups, says Jay Hope, superintendent of the Ontario Provincial Police. There are very few black police officers in Canada, he said — just 350 in Ontario and 660 in law-enforcement occupations across the country — and diversity must be pursued at all ranks to better reflect the communities they serve and to create more role models for visible minorities.

DISABLED WORKERS MISS OUT ON U.S. BOOM TIMES
Ithaca, N.Y. — While the real incomes for workers rose overall by five per cent during the economic boom of the 1990s, the employment of people with disabilities dropped over the same time bringing down the average income for disabled workers by four per cent, according to new research from Cornell University. The reasons for the decrease are unclear. One theory is that the American with Disabilities Act has actually backfired with lawsuits and workplace accommodations making employers less willing to hire people with disabilities. Another theory is that more disabled people dropped out of the labour market because fewer jobs have employer-sponsored health coverage.

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