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Human rights

Age: prohibited ground of discrimination and harassment | CDPDJ

Age

Age

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You believe you have been a victim of discrimination or harassment based on this ground?

Age is a prohibited ground of discrimination and harassment. This means that you cannot be treated differently because of your age. As well, you cannot be the target of offensive and repeated remarks or behaviour because of your age. These situations are contrary to the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms This link will redirect you to an external Website in a new window..

For example, you cannot be denied access to a bar under the pretext that the bar is reserved for people 30 years of age and over.

However, it should be noted that limiting certain activities to people 18 years of age and over is not discriminatory, for example, voting and drinking alcohol.

Gilles, 63, has been working for the same company for the past 26 years. The manager of human resources was told to force Gilles into retirement because he is the oldest employee at the company. However, Gilles wants to continue to work for a few more years. Since Gilles is productive and does all of the work he is asked to do, the company cannot require him to leave his position.

 

The owner of a camp site requests that Sophie and her friends, all in their early twenties, pay a $200 security deposit in case of damage. However, Sophie’s parents, who have been going to that same camp site for years, have never been asked to pay such a deposit.

 

The following judgments are examples related to this ground of discrimination. The complete list of judgments issued by Canadian Courts are available on the Canadian Legal Information Institute’s website This link will redirect you to an external Website in a new window.. You can do a search by grounds of discrimination.

Here are some of our publications related to this ground of discrimination. You can find all our publications on this ground of discrimination using a keyword on the Publications' page.

English language translations are provided when available.

Here are some news releases published by the Commission over the years. You can find all our news releases on this ground of discrimination using a keyword on the Media room’s page.

English language translations are provided when available.

Please note: These answers are to be used for information purposes only, and do not constitute legal advice.

  1. I am a young person and looking for work. Can an employer ask how old I am during my job interview?

    No. However, an employer may ask if you have reached the legal working age. Employers also have the right to verify a candidate’s age when the job requires a minimum age set by law. For example, a position that involves working at night, during school hours or in an establishment that serves or sells alcohol cannot be filled by a person under the age of 18.

    In any case, proof of age may be required once a candidate is hired.

  2. I am 65 years old and my employer told me that I should retire. Is there a mandatory retirement age in Québec?

    No, there is no mandatory retirement age in Québec. However, there are specific regulations that establish mandatory retirement for certain positions, such as judges appointed by the Québec Minister of Justice (70) and Sûreté du Québec’s police officers (65).

  3. I am 18, and my girlfriend and I are looking for our first apartment. I made an appointment by phone to visit an apartment, and when I arrived the landlord looked at me and said that the apartment was already rented. I don’t think that he wants to rent the apartment to young people. Am I a victim of discrimination?

    Possibly. Landlords cannot refuse to rent an apartment because of someone’s age.

  4. I am 55 years old, and I enjoy going to bars. Can I be denied access to a bar because I am too old?

    No, denying access to a bar based on age is prohibited, unless the person has not reached the legal drinking age (18).

  5. Can a restaurant deny us access because we are a family with young children and it’s a “trendy bistro for young professionals”?

    No, that constitutes discrimination based on the parents’ civil status and the age of the children, two grounds of discrimination prohibited by the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms.

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The following video is in American Sign Language (ASL) and is not accessible with a screen reader.

This video presents the topic of Age in American Sign Language (ASL)  This link will redirect you to an external website which may present barriers to accessibility..

 

Did you know?

Québec abolished mandatory retirement in 1983. Your employer does not have the right to force you into retirement because you have reached retirement age or the number of years of service required for retirement.

 

 

To learn more

See the section of our Website concerning exploitation of the elderly