Friday February 3, 2023
New report by Islamic Relief Canada analyzes Canadian Muslims’ lived experiences to uncover alarming evidence of Islamophobia in the workplace.
January 27th 2023, Burlington, ON – As Canada marks the National Day of Remembrance and Action Against Islamophobia, Islamic Relief Canada publishes a report which looks at the extent of Islamophobia in the Canadian labour market.
Supported by the Canadian Race Relations Foundation, “Muslims at the Margins: Islamophobia and Unemployment” explores nearly 700 Canadian Muslims’ lived experiences, uncovering critical evidence of Islamophobia in the workplace. Key findings from the report reveal that Islamophobia in the workplace negatively impacts Canadian Muslims’ career development, with over 67% of research participants having experienced formal discrimination and 84% experienced informal discrimination in their workplaces.
Results from interviews and an online survey confirm Islamophobia is systemic and gendered, with visibly-Muslim women reporting the highest levels of Islamophobia in the workplace. In Quebec — where many religious minorities are confronted with the real-life consequences of Bill 21 — the majority of participants (76%) felt it was harder to work as a Muslim in Quebec than other provinces, and (71%) expressed concern that Bill 21 is reaching beyond its jurisdiction.
The report includes dozens of personal anecdotes, including the following:
“I was working at a school in Quebec, but had to quit because I wear a hijab. No incident happened, but I was forced by Bill 21 to leave and get into a different field.”
“I was physically attacked at my workplace for being brown. Around 20-30 people witnessed & watched. The camera footage was deleted by my employer. I was made so uncomfortable at work I ended up quitting a 12 year career. My manager told other employees that although I was good at what I did, I always read the Quran and that’s all I was interested in so it’s better that I left.”
“I always feel like I have to be the face of the entire religion when there is such little diversity at work. Anything and everything I do is being hyper-fixated on by others, all waiting for me to do something wrong. I always feel ostracized and separated from others.”
About Islamic Relief Canada
Islamic Relief Canada is a registered charity in Canada that works in more than 30 countries to provide humanitarian relief and build resilient, prosperous communities. Visit www.islamicrelief.ca for more information.