Jennifer Rading

Year: 2019
Location: Edmonton
Profile: Born in Ottawa, Jennifer Rading had training in psychology and occupational health and safety and had been employed to create a behaviour-based safety program in the oil industry. That was before she began a 17-year career as a postal clerk with Canada Post, beginning in Ottawa and later continuing in Edmonton. During her employment, Rading had a hysterectomy, after which she required work accommodation that included not having to lift anything weighing more than 10 pounds. But she charges that management ignored her health and safety “in order to have more production, which is actually illegal.” A member of CUPW, her local grieved on her behalf. But ongoing alleged harassment by management caused her to suffer both physical and psychological impairments, including a diagnosis of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
          Rading soon found that she was one of many women working for Canada Post who had experienced harassment, including sexual harassment, by managers. She found a meeting with a number of complainants reaffirming of women’s solidarity. While she praises her union local’s interventions on behalf of the women, she believes that the national union’s efforts to fight systemic sexism are superficial. She also found the Workers Compensation Board unresponsive to her plight. Rading decided to leave her job at Canada Post when what she regarded as retribution for her struggle for justice seemed too overwhelming for her psychological health. It meant sacrificing her pension and other benefits, as well as her union involvement. But before leaving she had brought a complaint to the Canadian Human Rights Commission which was unresolved at the time of the interview.
Keywords: Canada Human Rights Commission, Canada Post, CUPW, Occupational Health and Safety, Postal workers, Sexual harassment, Women’s health issues and work discrimination, Workers Compensation Board
Transcript: Download PDF

See also: CUPW; Women and Work