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Ottawa, Mar 12 (Canadian-Media): Ontario had become the first province in Canada to promote pay transparency and to advance women's economic empowerment, media reports said.
Ontario's Strategy for Women's Economic Empowerment and legislation to increase pay transparency was introduced by Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne last week
This strategy would reportedly receive up to $50 million in funding over three years.
The gender wage gap in Ontario had reportedly remained stagnant for the last decade, with women earning around 30 percent less than men.
“It’s been more than 30 years since Ontario first passed pay equity legislation, but we are still working to close the gap. We know that too many women still face systemic barriers to economic advancement. When women face increased harassment, violence, poverty and discrimination, it hurts our society and our economy. It’s time for change. Then Now Next: Ontario’s Strategy for Women’s Economic Empowerment shines a spotlight on compensation and improves conditions for everyone in Ontario applying for a job. Thanks to this first-of-its-kind strategy, we’re building a fairer, more dynamic, forward-thinking and prosperous Ontario — for everyone,” Wynne was reported to state.
Kathleen Wynne/ Facebook
Improving gender equality in workplaces and society could reportedly add as much as $60 billion to Ontario’s Gross domestic product (GDP) over the next decade.
“Equality is the hallmark of a fair and just Ontario, yet equality is still out of reach for many women, especially racialized, Indigenous and newcomer women. Ontario is changing that by being a leader in Canada and investing in women’s futures at all economic levels,” Harinder Malhi, Ontario Minister of the Status of Women was reported to state.
This pay transparency reportedly requires some employers in their organizations to track and publish information about compensation.
The existing government had reportedly already laid the foundation to create fairness and opportunity for women, including a $15 minimum wage in 2019, new workplace leave of up to 17 weeks for survivors of domestic or sexual violence.
The present government had also invested reportedly $242 million in Ontario’s Gender-Based Violence Strategy
Our government also plans to build 100,000 new child care spaces.
Removal of long-standing barriers which had reportedly prevented women from benefiting equally in Ontario's rapidly changing economy would be done by the government's proposed multifaceted strategy which includes more transparent hiring processes.
Women also reportedly would be kept well-informed when negotiating fairer compensation equal to their male peers .
“By taking immediate and meaningful steps, Ontario stands out as a true leader when it comes to ending income inequality. Our government is committed to breaking down barriers to employment, closing the gender wage gap and helping to support all women in the economy,” Kevin Flynn, Ontario Minister of Labour was reported to state.
This legislation, if passed, would protect the candidate to get compensation based both on job's requirements and the candidate's qualifications.
All publicly advertised job postings would reportedly include a salary rate or range, not asking job candidates about their past compensation.
Once fully implemented, these measures would require employers to publicly post that data within their own workplaces, in addition to reporting them to the province.
The strategy will also reportedly further promote enhanced parental benefit entitlements; expansion of women's centres to provide skills training to women including immigrant, racialized and women experiencing violence; increased measures to promote women in corporate leadership; support women entrepreneurs and creating the Ontario Women's Entrepreneurship Association; launch a social awareness campaign to promote gender equality at work, at home and in communities.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)