April 16th 2014 is the first official Equal Pay Day in Ontario recognized by the provincial government.
According to the Equal Pay Coalition:
Equal Pay Day illustrates how far into the next year a woman, on average, must work to earn the same amount a man made in the previous year. In 2013 the Equal Pay Coalition declared April 9th as Equal Pay Day. The latest stats show that the gender pay gap in Ontario has actually widened. That why for 2014 Equal Pay Day is: April 16th, 2014. Although pay equity is the law in Ontario, women, on average, earn 31% less than men. This pay gap affects women of all ages and education levels. Women are often paid less, even when their skill, effort, responsibility and working conditions are similar to men's.
Child care is central to the struggle for equal pay for women. Child care is key to mothers' employment. As Justice Rosalie Abella said in the 1984 Royal Commission on Equality in Employment, "child care is the ramp that provides equal access to the workforce for mothers". Pay equity is also important to the child care workforce - a group that's predominantly women. Yet, as CCPA's recent report on the pay gap points out, "for the first time in more than 20 years, there is no Ontario program with the goal of increasing the inequitable wages of child care staff".
CRRU has collected reports and news about Equal Pay Day in Ontario. For more about pay equity across Canada, please see the Equal Pay Coalition's page on other provinces.
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
- A growing concern: Ontario's gender pay gap, Mary Cornish, 15 Apr 14 [see especially pp. 21-24 for discussion of child care. Ten-point plan calls for affordable and accessible child care, and fair wages for the child care workforce.]
- Ontario Equal Pay Day facts. Hennesey's Index, 16 Apr 14
Equal Pay Coalition
- Sign the declaration to close Ontario's gender pay gap for good
- Press release: 52 years is too long to wait to close the gender pay gap, 16 Apr 14
- Press release: Ontario government commits to eliminating the gender pay gap, 8 Apr 14
- Video: Secrets of the gender pay gap revealed, 2 Apr 14
- Video: Call to action - Equal Pay Day, 10 Apr 14
Ontario Women's Directorate
- Statement to the Legislature: Equal Pay Day, by The Honourable Kevin Flynn, Minister of Labour & The Honourable Teresa Piruzza, Minister Responsible for Women’s Issues, 8 Apr 14
- Ontario's Equal Pay Day to raise awareness of gender income gap, Laurie Monsebraaten, Toronto Star, 15 Apr 14
- Bring down the gender gap, Waterloo Record, 15 Apr 14
- Lack of pay equity leads to labour pains for midwives, Toronto Star, 15 Apr 14
- Wage gap growing, Sudbury Star, 15 Apr 14
- Canadian Labour Congress: Equal Pay Day
- Canadian Union of Public Employees: Province must take action on growing gender income gap
- Elementary Teachers Federation Ontario: Freezing public sector wages will only worsen gender pay gap
- Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation: It's time to end the gender pay gap
For more on the importance of child care to women's employment see CRRU's Issue File: "Early childhood education and child care - STILL central to women's equality"