Canada 's A Civilized Country Essay
As the world marks International Women 's Day, pregnancy discrimination complaints continue to roll in regularly at Canada 's human rights commissions — and in some provinces the numbers are rising at alarming rates.
The number of cases has spiked in British Columbia, where the BC Human Rights Coalition said 21 of 165 cases it represented in the 2010-2011 period were based on pregnancy discrimination. That 's a 50 per cent increase from the number of pregnancy-related cases it took on in the previous fiscal year.
The fact this discrimination still exists is "somewhat medieval," said BC Human Rights Coalition spokesman Robyn Durling.
"You think society would have evolved beyond the point that somebody gets pregnant and it 's going to mean termination from their employment," he added.
"Canada 's a civilized country. We all expect that, as a society, we 're going to support women and support their right to have children. But we have individuals that just don 't go along with that."
Under the Canadian Human Rights Act, women cannot be discriminated against in any aspect of employment because of a pregnancy.
Pregnancy discrimination is considered a form of sex discrimination, according to the act. It 's illegal to refuse to hire or to promote a woman, to terminate her employment or to harass her in relation to a pregnancy.
Complaints typically come in three forms:…