Former provincial employee eyes rights complaint

A former Alberta government employee is mulling a human rights complaint over a benefits package that defines a “spouse” only as someone of the opposite sex.

A former Alberta government employee is mulling a human rights complaint over a benefits package that defines a “spouse” only as someone of the opposite sex.

Scott Mair, who worked for Children’s Services, says he was forced to list his husband as a “benefit partner” when applying to have him covered under the plan, which applies to provincial union employees.

“They were refusing to include me as a spouse, which basically is them refusing to recognize my same-sex marriage.”

The dispute has a familiar ring to Mickey Wilson, Prairie representative for Egale Canada, which advocates for the rights of gay, lesbian and transgendered people.

Before same-sex marriage was legalized, opponents argued a “civil union” would mean the same thing without using the same words.

“Language is very powerful,” he said. “We find ourselves identified and included or erased and excluded in language.”

An spokesman with the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees says it is meeting with the government to get the wording changed.

Mair, who has since left his job with Children’s Services said he’ll wait to see if the talks lead to changes before deciding whether to file a complaint.

He’s concerned because other employees in same-sex marriages have contacted him to say they feel the same way but are afraid to speak out on the issue.

“Sexual minority people in Alberta will tell you that there’s Canada and then there’s Alberta,” he said.

Just Posted

More than $25k raised for Red Deer firefighter who is recovering in hospital

‘I think the support he’s getting is because of the person he is’

Lacombe backs Blackfalds stormwater plan

Stormwater management plan will open up more land for development in Blackfalds

Two men facing charges in alleged abduction

RCMP issued alert for woman on Wednesday morning who was found safe later that day

Red Deer RCMP seek public assistance to identify suspect in indecent acts

Red Deer RCMP are looking for a man believed to be responsible… Continue reading

WATCH: Two weeks away from Canadian Finals Rodeo in Red Deer

In just two weeks, Ponoka’s Shayna Weir will compete with the best… Continue reading

Leon Draisaitl has overtime winner as Edmonton Oilers down Boston Bruins 3-2

EDMONTON — Connor McDavid set up Leon Draisaitl for the overtime winner… Continue reading

Edmonton girl guide sells out of cookies in front of cannabis store on first day

EDMONTON — She’s being called one smart cookie. As people lined up… Continue reading

New vacuum needed: Calgary family adopts three bonded St. Bernard buddies

EDMONTON — Three adult St. Bernards who couldn’t be separated because they’re… Continue reading

Film with Fan Bingbing, Bruce Willis cancelled after tax case

BEIJING — The director of “Air Strike,” featuring Chinese actress Fan Bingbing,… Continue reading

Michael Buble shuts down rumours of retirement from music

LOS ANGELES — Michael Buble is shutting down rumours that he’s going… Continue reading

After Canada legalizes pot, industry eyes rest of the world

MONTREAL — Cam Battley is a top executive at one of Canada’s… Continue reading

Facebook’s election ‘war room’ takes aim at fake information

MENLO PARK, Calif. — In an otherwise innocuous part of Facebook’s expansive… Continue reading

Military to overhaul morale-boosting trips after review finds serious problems

OTTAWA — Canada’s top general is overhauling military morale-boosting tours after an… Continue reading

Most Read