BC Hydro, Dentons, Home Depot, National Bank, City of Ottawa and SaskTel are among Canada’s best employers for diversity.

Canada’s Best Diversity Employers 2016 list recognizes employers across Canada that have exceptional workplace diversity and inclusiveness programs.

The selection committee reviews these programs to determine how they compare to other employers in the same field, addressing five major employee groups: women, members of visible minorities, persons with disabilities, aboriginal peoples, and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered/transsexual individuals.

Read: Are you one of Canada’s top employers?

Employers on the 2016 list were chosen for a range of initiatives they offer to build a diverse and inclusive work environment, including:

  • BC Hydro encourages managers to hire skilled newcomers at junior-level positions and provides a defined career advancement plan, which includes timelines for performance and development reviews. It also created an aboriginal education and employment strategy and maintains a dedicated team that focuses on the recruitment of aboriginal candidates.
  • Law firm Dentons formed its Dialogue LGBTA Resource Group, which promotes the professional growth of employees, and fosters external business development and networking opportunities for its LGBT firm members. It also partner with RBC to provide work experience for the bank’s aboriginal articling student.
  • In the past year, Home Depot Canada joined the federally funded project Ready, Willing and Able, a partnership of the Canadian Association for Community Living, the Canadian Autism Spectrum Disorders Alliance and member organizations to hire people with intellectual disabilities and autism spectrum disorder. It also fosters an environment of inclusion for people with disabilities and is currently in the process of installing adjustable work desks and elevators at office locations across the country.
  • National Bank employees participated in a mentoring program to facilitate the integration of new Canadian employees, in partnership with ALLIES Montréal. It also maintains a dedicated group to help female employees develop their professional network and accelerate advancement, and has established an employee resource group for LGBT employees in support of an inclusive work environment.
  • City of Ottawa established an immigration strategy that includes employment initiatives and economic development programs, such as the Annual Immigrant Entrepreneurship Awards, to recognize the achievements of new Canadians, and the Professional Internship for Newcomers Program, which provides temporary work placements for newcomers. It is also a member of the Employment Accessibility Resource Network (EARN), a joint initiative between service providers and employers to help persons with disabilities find employment.
  • SaskTel‘s aboriginal recruitment strategy aims to increase the number of aboriginal employees in the workforce through partnerships with First Nations Bands, Tribal Councils and Aboriginal employment agencies, attending targeted career fairs and participating in networking events hosted by the Aboriginal Government Employee Network.

See the full list of the best diversity employers in Canada

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