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Back to Your Journey Part 3: On the job

Your Journey Part 3: Understanding the Code and the Policy 

The following briefly defines harassment, discrimination and the duty to accommodate.


Discrimination against trans or nonbinary people could include the denial of employment or services, withholding benefits that are available to others, or having extra burdens imposed on them and not others, for reasons that are at least in part related to them being trans or nonbinary.


The Code defines harassment as “engaging in a course of vexatious comment or conduct that is known or ought reasonably to be known to be unwelcome.” In deciding what is “reasonable”, the perspectives of trans and nonbinary people are included. The Policy outlines many forms of gender-based harassment and sexual harassment, including derogatory language, insults, comments related to a person’s gender identity and expression, and the refusal to refer to someone by their self-identified name and pronoun.

Discrimination and harassment are not always overt or obvious. Individual acts themselves may be ambiguous and explained away, but when viewed as part of a larger picture, these acts may reveal a pattern of conduct that amounts to discrimination or harassment based on gender identity or expression.

Duty to Accommodate

Trans and nonbinary people have the legal right to request reasonable accommodation in the workplace, and employers have a legal duty to accommodate the needs of people because of their gender identity and gender expression, unless it would cause the employer undue hardship (which could include cost or compromising health and safety). Accommodation is a multi-party process with shared responsibilities between the employer and the individual seeking accommodation. Ultimately, the duty to accommodate seeks to achieve respect for dignity, individualization, integration and full participation in the workplace.


Continue to Part 3