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Historically, the tourism sector has been more diverse than most economic sectors. The last census data showed that compared to the overall Canadian workforce, Tourism had a higher percentage of Indigenous Canadians, Youth, New Canadians, and Women. In the past decade, the workforce in the sector has also become increasingly diverse. Still, there is room for improvement. The industry has long recognized the need for increased heterogeneity, which is also a reflection of the changing workforce and consumer/visitor demographics.
Tourism HR Canada brings together industry stakeholders and other subject experts to set quality standards of practice, which inform education and training, HR practices and policy. Standards on diversity and inclusion principles were first set in the mid-90’s and regularly updated to reflect current demands.
Tourism HR Canada’s Emerit Training includes various references to good practice to help ensure the workforce is inclusive. HR tools reinforce the need to challenge misconceptions hiring managers may have related to recruiting a diverse workforce, and helps identify benefits of a diverse workforce, e.g. increased productivity, increased job satisfaction, reduced turnover. The HR training provides guidance how to review existing organizational practices, policies and procedures to identify areas of improvements, e.g. bias and systemic barriers in recruitment, selection, hiring, training and development, compensation, career development, promotion. The program also looks at strategies that promote diversity and inclusion such as: diversity awareness training for all staff; strengthening policies associated with the full HR management cycled (e.g. recruitment, selection, hiring, career development, return-to-work, etc.); revising job descriptions; or looking at different types of job accommodations.
Tourism HR Canada has also partnered with different interest groups on various diversity initiatives. For example, Tourism HR Canada and the Hotel Association of Canada, developed Sensitivity and Diversity training resources to help tourism and hospitality businesses prepare for increasing diversity in their workplace, and in their guests. In partnership with the Canadian Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, a new and comprehensive set of tools and workshops help businesses and communities improve on their inclusion practices and preparing welcoming workplaces for LGBT visitors. These tools and others are designed to help all types of tourism business.
Tourism HR Canada also advises on the need for compliance with essential legislation and regulations, including Canadian Human Rights Act, Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Provincial Acts and Codes and the Criminal Code 2017, and rights of LGBTQ2 persons (i.e. gender identity and gender expression as protected groups from discrimination).
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