Employment Equity



The University recognizes that its strength lies with its people. Building and maintaining an excellent workforce depends on creating an environment that attracts, develops, and retains talented and capable people for all positions. The University is committed to:

  • Maintaining a welcoming and favourable work environment for all individuals
  • Removing workplace barriers that negatively affect individuals or groups
  • Educating all individuals on the values, elements, and application of this policy
  • Supporting the creation of an equitable and diverse workforce
  • Providing community leadership as a progressive and equitable employer


To define the principles for employment equity whose purpose it is to recognize, prevent, and eliminate disadvantage in order to create a climate that fosters attitudes and behaviours that advance employment equity.



All employment practices, policies and decisions with respect to all employees of the university. In accordance with the Federal Contractors Program, temporary and casual employees working less than 12 weeks in a calendar year, co-op students on contracts less than four months, summer students, or those students from Memorial or other educational institutions who are completing practicum placements and are otherwise full-time students, are excluded from the employment equity self-identification process and the university's workforce analysis.



Designated Group - groups identified by the Canadian Employment Equity Act as facing barriers to inclusion and participation in the workforce. They are women, aboriginal people, visible minorities, and persons with disabilities.

Under-representation - exists when the percentage of designated group members of a given employee occupational group is less than the percentage of designated group members in the occupational groups from whichever of the following the university can reasonable expect to recruit new employees: i) the local census metropolitan area; ii) the province of Newfoundland and Labrador; and iii) the Canadian workforce as a whole.




Employment Equity ensures that no one is denied access to employment opportunities for reasons unrelated to ability or qualifications.  An employment equity program ensures that all candidates for promotion, hiring, training and other opportunities are given serious and equitable consideration. Individual merit will continue to be the prime criterion in these decisions.

The university strives to remove barriers to the inclusion and participation of under-represented designation groups.

The University's goal of a diversified workforce, with respect to the four target groups will be achieved within a framework of merit, non-discrimination, inclusion, respect, and a climate free of discriminatory barriers.

Employment Equity ensures the University's workforce is diverse and reflective of the broader community in order to fulfill our commitment to excellence in teaching, research, scholarship, and service to the general public.

The University recognizes that Recruitment and Selection decisions are important in correcting persistent historical under-representation of designated groups.

Where workforce analysis and employment systems review indicate that an under-representation exists in certain occupational groups, the following will apply to recruitment and selection decisions:

Where two or more candidates for a position have substantially equal qualifications, and one candidate is from a designated group which is under-represented, the group member shall be recommended for the position.

The review of this policy and any associated changes will be implemented in consultation with the Employment Equity Committee.

The University has set forth the following objectives for its employment equity program:

  • The university will develop and implement an employment equity plan. Based on this plan, each unit will be required to examine its situation and determine the existing constraints to increasing designated group member participation in the unit, future staffing requirements, actions to overcome the constraints, and other measures designed to improve the current status of designate group members in the unit. This plan will be included in any compliance reviews completed by the Federal Contractors Program. Equity plans are subject to renewal every 5 years.
  • The university will continue to support employees in the pursuit of improved education with the goal of advancing designated group members to improve diversity. The University recognizes that education and training play a key role in the advancement and development of employees. The University will perform an annual review of participation in its training programs. Training programs may be targeted at certain groups in an effort to correct historical under-representation.
  • The university will regularly review and monitor employment systems to ensure that no employment policy or practice contains systemic, actual or potential barriers that may adversely affect the way the university recruits, selects, hires, compensates, develops and trains, promotes, retains, terminates and accommodates employees.

The university collects and maintains equity information on its employees and applicants to positions for the purposes outlined in this policy and as required by the Government of Canada through the Federal Contractors Program. All personal data collected is confidential. When information is used to report on and release aggregate statistics on the university's workforce and effectiveness of the equity program, individuals will not be identified.

An individual will only be considered a designated group member if he/she has self-identified as such either at the time of application, or by responding to the university-wide equity census questionnaire, which the University distributes periodically to all employees to ensure that workforce information is up to date and complete.


5.1 The President
The President is the senior university official responsible for employment equity. In accordance with the Federal Contractors Program and the university's commitment to employment equity the President will:

  • demonstrate the commitment among senior management to employment equity and communicate this commitment to all levels of the organization
  • support the work of the Employment Equity Committee
  • consult and encourage employee groups to participate in the process of implementing employment equity
  • ensure the criteria of the Federal Contractors Program are implemented
  • review and approve departmental equity plans to ensure the university wide equity goals will be achieved
  • review and approve the university equity plan

5.2 The Senior Executive
Members of the senior executive of the university will review employment equity activities in their respective units. The responsibilities shall include, but will not necessarily be limited to, the following:

  • promoting and supporting the principles of employment equity
  • ensuring that academic and administrative units comply with the provisions of the employment equity policy and program
  • approving and recommending to the Employment Equity Committee employment equity plans for units reporting to them

5.2 Departments and Divisions of Memorial University
In consultation with the Employment Equity Committee and the Employment Equity Officer, individual departments and divisions will:

  • compile and develop employment equity plans
  • implement approved employment equity plans
  • evaluate and renew employment equity plans every five years

5.4 The Employment Equity Officer
The Employment Equity Officer is accountable for the development, promotion, implementation, and coordination of the university employment equity program, in consultation with the Employment Equity Committee. The Employment Equity Officer works closely with the MUNFA-Administration Equity Committee (Joint Equity Committee) in fulfilling its mandate as outlined in the MUNFA Collective Agreement.

In consultation with the Employment Equity Committee, the Employment Equity Officer will:

  • develop an employment equity work plan for the university to meet the requirements of the Government of Canada in the Federal Contractors Program
  • ensure the ongoing collection of university workforce data
  • establish, maintain, and analyze collected equity data
  • produce an annual report of employment equity activities and progress in achieving equity goals
  • ensure confidentiality of employment equity information
  • assist in the review of all employment policies and procedures of the university
  • develop and implement equity and diversity training for managers and decision makers
  • promote awareness and acceptance of employment equity throughout the university

5.5 The Department of Human Resources & the Office of Faculty Relations
The managers, associate directors, and directors in the Department of Human Resources and Office of Faculty Relations play a critical role in the application of university employment policies. All such individuals will participate in employment systems reviews to ensure there is no systemic discrimination in employment policies and practices. Employment systems reviews will be conducted with the Employment Equity Officer and the Employment Equity Committee.

The Director ensures the Department of Human Resources is in compliance with the criteria outlined in the Federal Contractors Program.

Staff members of both Human Resources and Faculty Relations shall promote and support the principles of employment equity throughout the university and ensure that units comply with the provisions of the employment equity policy and program.

5.6 The Employment Equity Committee
The Employment Equity Committee is comprised of representatives from all employee groups, including all employee bargaining agents, non-bargaining unit faculty and staff, and the administration. All employment equity target groups should be represented on the committee. The committee's mandate includes the following:

  • articulating the concerns of the workforce and in particular the needs and suggestions of the designated groups
  • monitoring and advising on the university's employment equity policy and equity program initiatives
  • reviewing equity plans submitted by units and recommending approval to the President
  • reviewing the university wide employment equity plan and recommending  approval to the President
  • reviewing the university's employment systems review outcomes and providing  advice on corrective measures

Related Documents:

Employment Equity at Memorial



Title: Employment Equity
Category : People Resources Approval Date: 2006-07-20
Effective Date : 2006-07-20 Review Date: 2014-07-20
The President
Provost and Vice-President (Academic)

Department of Human Resources 709-864-4626

Previous Versions:
No previous versions