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Women in the Workplace | Part One

Published On: May 6, 2014

Today women make almost 50% of the workforce. In addition, women are more educated than men and are more likely to be working multiple jobs at once – yet they are still earning less money than men.

Gender equality is assessed by comparing the ratio of earned income between men and women per capita. Despite years legislation to prevent discrimination and promote equal rights, Canada and other peer countries still fail to bridge the income gap.

Many Canadians wrongly believe that we have surpassed the income gap, when in fact Canada has ranked 11th out of its 17 peer countries with a “C” grade positioning our self only slightly higher than the United States.

The gap in income between men and women in Canada is nineteen percent. The gap, widens for those women older than 45 with an average earning of 75.7 cents for every one dollar that men earn in comparison to women aged 25-34 who earn 78.3 cents to every one dollar earned by their male counterparts.

While the amount of women entering the workforce is always on the rise, the number of management roles that they hold is not. In Canada, women hold 0.32% of all management roles whereas Norway leads with 35%.

There are many factors that lead to these statistics. The most obvious is that women fear that taking time off for maternity leave will impact their careers negatively. Likewise, women are often looked over when it comes to promote because of the fear that they may need extended time off to look after their children.

Countries like Norway, Sweden, and Denmark have very high rates of women holding management positions while also offering extending maternity and paternity leave and in-work day care, proving that having children does not need to be a hindrance to a woman’s career.

In most cases Canada is quite comparable to the United States when it comes women in the work place, with Canadians edging only slightly ahead of our Southern neighbours.

In the second installment of our blog series on Women in the Workplace, we will discuss whether the hiring process is still gendered and what type of stereotypes women face at work.



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