Unpacking the Duty to Accommodate: Building Inclusive Spaces

April 11

Workplace accommodations aim to enhance accessibility while creating a welcoming and productive workplace for individuals to fulfill their roles safely and efficiently. It also enables employees to bring their authentic selves to work, fostering a sense of belonging.

The Ontario Human Rights Code states that every person has a right to equal treatment with respect to employment without discrimination or harassment, enumerating 16 protected grounds. Employers and business leaders are responsible for reacting to accommodation requests and proactively identifying and dismantling the barriers hindering their team members’ full potential. These requests require a delicate balance — respecting privacy and confidentiality while ensuring that the accommodation process is constructive and supportive. Often, the most significant pain points are not knowing where to start, how to be proactive, and understanding the duty to accommodate. Ultimately, it’s about cultivating a workplace that respects legal compliance while advancing inclusivity for all employees.

Gain timely and valuable insight on navigating the duty to accommodate – register today!

Registration is FREE for HRPA members.

HRPA's member learning programming goal for 2024 is all about quality and enhanced value for your HRPA membership. This year's micro-conferences (February, April, September) will be FREE virtual events to members, aiming to offer up a total of 12 CPD hours. That's a savings of $120 per event! Not a member yet? Become one today

Workplace accommodations aim to enhance accessibility while creating a welcoming and productive workplace for individuals to fulfill their roles safely and efficiently. It also enables employees to bring their authentic selves to work, fostering a sense of belonging.   

The Ontario Human Rights Code states that every person has a right to equal treatment with respect to employment without discrimination or harassment, enumerating 16 protected grounds. Employers and business leaders are responsible for reacting to accommodation requests and proactively identifying and dismantling the barriers hindering their team members’ full potential. These requests require a delicate balance — respecting privacy and confidentiality while ensuring that the accommodation process is constructive and supportive. Often, the most significant pain points are not knowing where to start, how to be proactive, and understanding the duty to accommodate. Ultimately, it’s about cultivating a workplace that respects legal compliance while advancing inclusivity for all employees. 

Your host for this micro-conference is Lorin MacDonald, an award-winning Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility (IDEA) practitioner and human rights lawyer supporting people with disabilities, a disability awareness educator, and an accessibility advocate. Lorin also lives with profound hearing loss. Her legal expertise and lived experience ensure that this event will unravel the intricacies of addressing individualized accommodation requests using a Human Rights-Based Approach (HRBA) framework. A commitment to using an empathic and inclusive lens will result in the development of adaptations that resonate and create a sense of belonging.  

A session on “Uncomfortable Workplace Conversations” is not to be missed! Our panel of legal and HR practitioners will discuss the Human Rights Commission, Tribunal, and court decisions behind the headlines, what pitfalls to avoid, and tips on navigating those uncomfortable discussions that are pivotal for organizational growth.   

Our learning sessions will cover broad workplace operational issues such as  

  • gender-neutral washrooms, 
  • medical marijuana use, 
  • service, therapy, and emotional support dogs, and  
  • the intrusion of domestic violence in the workplace. 

Also discussed will be organizational considerations like adapted performance indicators and reviews. Gain timely and valuable insight on navigating the duty to accommodate – register today

  • Gain a comprehensive understanding of managing and implementing workplace accommodations.  
  • Learn how to recognize and address systemic barriers to accessibility.  
  • Become skilled at every stage of handling accommodation requests, from determining the nature of barriers to finding sustainable solutions.  
  • Learn about the duty to inquire. 
  • Equip yourself with the tools to create more inclusive and accessible workplaces.   
  • Invest in your professional development by staying up-to-date on the latest trend developments, legal requirements, and best practices, making yourself a valuable asset to your organization while advancing your career in HR. 
  • HR Managers and HR Directors who lead the planning and execution of HR strategies, legal compliance with accessibility, and upholding human rights protections.  
  • HR professionals who need to understand legal rights and responsibilities in their work, such as HR Recruitment Specialists, HR Managers, HR Directors, HR Business Partners, and HR Tech Specialists.  
  • Organizational Development (OD) professionals and others who lead or execute OD strategies and programs in their organizations.  
  • HR professionals involved with physical and psychological safety, change management and IDEA implementation.  
  • on-HR professionals who manage workplaces or employee issues.  
  • Other ancillary professionals who may require legal awareness and compliance including employment lawyers, law students, EDI professionals, Health and Safety professionals, etc. 

Workplace accommodations aim to enhance accessibility while creating a welcoming and productive workplace for individuals to fulfill their roles safely and efficiently. It also enables employees to bring their authentic selves to work, fostering a sense of belonging.   

The Ontario Human Rights Code states that every person has a right to equal treatment with respect to employment without discrimination or harassment, enumerating 16 protected grounds. Employers and business leaders are responsible for reacting to accommodation requests and proactively identifying and dismantling the barriers hindering their team members’ full potential. These requests require a delicate balance — respecting privacy and confidentiality while ensuring that the accommodation process is constructive and supportive. Often, the most significant pain points are not knowing where to start, how to be proactive, and understanding the duty to accommodate. Ultimately, it’s about cultivating a workplace that respects legal compliance while advancing inclusivity for all employees. 

Your host for this micro-conference is Lorin MacDonald, an award-winning Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility (IDEA) practitioner and human rights lawyer supporting people with disabilities, a disability awareness educator, and an accessibility advocate. Lorin also lives with profound hearing loss. Her legal expertise and lived experience ensure that this event will unravel the intricacies of addressing individualized accommodation requests using a Human Rights-Based Approach (HRBA) framework. A commitment to using an empathic and inclusive lens will result in the development of adaptations that resonate and create a sense of belonging.  

A session on “Uncomfortable Workplace Conversations” is not to be missed! Our panel of legal and HR practitioners will discuss the Human Rights Commission, Tribunal, and court decisions behind the headlines, what pitfalls to avoid, and tips on navigating those uncomfortable discussions that are pivotal for organizational growth.   

Our learning sessions will cover broad workplace operational issues such as  

  • gender-neutral washrooms, 
  • medical marijuana use, 
  • service, therapy, and emotional support dogs, and  
  • the intrusion of domestic violence in the workplace. 

Also discussed will be organizational considerations like adapted performance indicators and reviews. Gain timely and valuable insight on navigating the duty to accommodate – register today

  • Gain a comprehensive understanding of managing and implementing workplace accommodations.  
  • Learn how to recognize and address systemic barriers to accessibility.  
  • Become skilled at every stage of handling accommodation requests, from determining the nature of barriers to finding sustainable solutions.  
  • Learn about the duty to inquire. 
  • Equip yourself with the tools to create more inclusive and accessible workplaces.   
  • Invest in your professional development by staying up-to-date on the latest trend developments, legal requirements, and best practices, making yourself a valuable asset to your organization while advancing your career in HR. 
  • HR Managers and HR Directors who lead the planning and execution of HR strategies, legal compliance with accessibility, and upholding human rights protections.  
  • HR professionals who need to understand legal rights and responsibilities in their work, such as HR Recruitment Specialists, HR Managers, HR Directors, HR Business Partners, and HR Tech Specialists.  
  • Organizational Development (OD) professionals and others who lead or execute OD strategies and programs in their organizations.  
  • HR professionals involved with physical and psychological safety, change management and IDEA implementation.  
  • on-HR professionals who manage workplaces or employee issues.  
  • Other ancillary professionals who may require legal awareness and compliance including employment lawyers, law students, EDI professionals, Health and Safety professionals, etc. 

Preliminary Agenda 
Date: Thursday, April 11  
Duration: 8:45 AM – 1:00 PM  
Virtual participation: Live stream via ON24 

Complete programming details to be announced soon. 

Do you want to help shape the agenda? Do you have questions that you want answered? Share with us here and get your answers discussed at the event. 

Conference Fees 










This event is FREE for HRPA members! Not a member yet? Become one today

Not sure of your schedule? Register virtually for on demand access!  
Whether you attend the virtual sessions live or not, registering will give you access to the conference recordings. On-demand viewings qualify for CPD hours and recordings are made available for one year post-event date.   

Virtual Members and StudentsNon-Members 
Save My Spot
February 15 – February 29
Free$120 $60 
Early Bird 
March 1 – March 21
Free$120 $99
Regular 
March 22 onward
Free$120

Please complete our sponsor submission form here

Contact Adam Hart, Business Development Manager, to learn more about partnership or sponsorship opportunities. 
Tel: 416.923.2324 ext. 7353 
Email: ahart@hrpa.ca