C-SIS employees allege discrimination and bullying accepted culture at agency

Employees suing the Canadian Security Intelligence Service allege it lacks commitment to a diverse and harassment-free working environment.

That was in reply to a recently filed statement of defence by C-SIS, which goes on to say management created a workplace rife with discrimination, harassment and bullying, ``through its tone at the top.''

The reply was submitted to the Federal Court of Canada this week, the latest volley in a high-profile legal battle.

A statement of claim filed in July by five C-SIS employees, who cannot be legally identified, alleges that racist, sexist, homophobic and discriminatory behaviour had become the accepted culture and norm at the agency.

Late last month C-SIS asked the Federal Court to dismiss the lawsuit, saying it never engaged in or tolerated religious bigotry, used derogatory nicknames or subjected the staffers to reprisals.