News release

Retailers Reminded of Law Against Discrimination

The Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission is reminding retailers and service providers in the province that it is illegal to discriminate against an individual on the basis of their race and/or colour under the Nova Scotia Human Rights Act.

Serving All Customers Better is a free online course developed by the commission to educate frontline service staff about consumer racial profiling and how to prevent it.

Since its launch in 2017, more than 15,000 employees across the province have completed the training.

The training is free and available at www.servingall.ca or by visiting the commission’s website at humanrights.novascotia.ca. Serving All Customers Better was adapted for national use by the Canadian Association of Statutory Human Rights Agencies in 2018.

It is free and available in both French and English at http://cashra.ca/classroom/

Quick Facts:

  • consumer racial profiling appears as a variety of behaviours targeting individuals who may be seen as a visible minority. They include refusal of service, degrading comments, following in stores and searching without cause
  • in 2013, the commission released a consumer racial profiling study, Working Together to Better Serve All Nova Scotians, that engaged over 1,200 people in four geographic locations: Halifax Regional Municipality, Millbrook, Sydney and Digby
  • according to the research, members of visible minority groups were three times more likely to be followed and four times more likely to be searched while shopping

Additional Resources:

The Working Together to Better Serve All Nova Scotians report is available online at https://humanrights.novascotia.ca/working-better-serve-all-nova-scotians

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Media Contact:

Jeff Overmars
902-424-2637 Email: