Women Still Doing More Unpaid Work Than Men

Times have definitely changed in Canada when it comes to having children and raising a family.

Men are doing more work at home than they did in previous generations, with more of a role in cooking and household cleaning.

Today 76 per cent of men take part in house hold work, where as in 1986 just over half did.

We have come a long way, but according to a Statistics Canada Time Use Survey, women are still doing the overwhelming majority of unpaid work at home.

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According to the report women spent an average of 3.6 hours per day doing unpaid household, which is 50 per cent more than the 2.4 hours men spent doing the same tasks.

The highest participation rates for fathers was found in Quebec, and the lowest was in the prairies – Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta.

So why does this matter? It is a contributing factor to the gender pay gap.

A recent article in the New York Times pointed out that the gender gap starts to widen most sharply when women are in their late 20s to mid 30s, when most women are having children.

They said that the main reason that pay is lower is because the division of labour at home is ‘still unequal, even when both spouses work full time.’

Women are more likely to give up job opportunities or take less intensive jobs, because they know they will have more responsibilities at home.

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A study found that the bulk of the pay gap is from ‘women not getting raises and promotions at the rate of men’ and that ‘seniority and experience seem to pay off much more for men than for women.’

Studies have shown that being a member of a union can help narrow the gap for all members of society, including women. Union members earn on average $5.28 per hour more than workers without a union and women earn $7.10 per hour more on average with a union, getting paid more fairly.

Being a member of a union also means you have a collective agreement that will make sure you are treated fairly no matter what gender you are or if you choose to start a family.


Statistics Canada Census Shares Important Information About the Workplace

The Canadian 2016 census was released this week and there were some important findings for Canada’s workforce.

For the first time since Canada began conducting the census, there are more senior citizens than children living in Canada with 5.9 million people aged 65 and over. Statistics Canada attributes this to the post-war baby boom.

Currently there are more people entering retirement than entering it.

The prairie provinces, including Alberta, have a younger population than the overall average. Calgary has the highest percentage of working aged people.

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Despite this, youth employment opportunities remain low in major cities while the opposite was true for older workers. Researchers think that one factor could be lack of employment opportunities when young people leave school.

Another important factor and is that the majority of seniors are women and there are a number of issues they have to consider.

Women are outliving men so they need to plan better for retirement. They also continue to face a gender pay gap while working, which will follow them into retirement.

Women are more likely to enter and exit the workforce to raise children, this effects their advancement and also their ability to save for retirement.

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Being a union member is one way to help address these issues.

According to the Canadian labour Congress, union members earn on average $5.28 per hour more than workers without a union and women earn $7.10 per hour more on average with a union. With a collective agreement, women can ensure that they will be paid equally for equal work.

Joining a union also means that you also can start saving for retirement with a pension. At Teamsters Local 362 our pension program is something that we are very proud of and our members always comment on.

As our population ages we need to make sure Canada takes care of our seniors in the workplace and in retirement.


Alberta Receives a Poor Grade For Gender Wage Gap

Alberta recently received a grade in a study released from the Conference Board of Canada, and it was not good.

Their report card compared provinces and territories, as well as 15 peer countries in a number of categories including economy, education and skills, innovation, environment, health and society.

One of the most striking statements in the report is how bad Alberta measures when it comes to measures of equity. One of the worst? The gender wage gap, where we received a D grade.

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The report pointed out that Alberta has a difference in median weekly earnings of close to 25 per cent between men and women, making it the third-highest gender wage gap of all regions in the report.

But the gender wage gap wasn’t the only area where Alberta faired poorly in terms of wages.

We also received a C grade for the immigrant wage gap with nearly a 26 per cent gap between immigrants and Canadian born citizens. There was also a 66 per cent wage gap between people with disabilities and those without.

Craig Alexander is the board’s senior vice-president and chief economist. According to CBC News, he said that these numbers indicate some key social challenges in Alberta.

"Improving labour market opportunities and conditions for disadvantaged groups can help the province boost social and economic performance," he said.

One way to do this is through unions. It is well known that unions set the bar when it comes to wages for women, immigrants and those with disabilities.

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Unions have played a major role when it comes women’s rights in the workplace, including the Teamsters with contracts that have lead the way when it comes to gender equality. According to the Canadian Labour Congress, union members earn on average $5.28 per hour more than workers without a union and women earn $7.10 per hour more on average with a union.

A collective agreement can ensure that all workers are treated equally and have rights to protect them in the workplace.

Unions are also very much involved in social activism, fighting to make sure that our government and society are treating all people fairly. With continued unionization, we can push for Alberta to go from a D to an A.


The Gender Pay Gap: What You Need To Know

It is hard to believe that in 2016 there is still an issue with a gender pay gap in Canada, but it is true.

Although it is true in many industries women are making the same amount as men, and things have improved since a decade ago, we still have a long way to go.

Here are the answers to some of the biggest questions about the gender pay gap.

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How large is the pay gap?

In a study by Catalyst Canada, Canadian women are making $8,000 a year less than men doing an equivalent job – the global average is $4,000. Statistics Canada shows that a woman working full time in Canada makes 73.5 cents for every dollar a man makes. They also found that that’s $168 billion in wages missing from the Canadian economy.

This wage gap exists across all sectors and all education levels.

How does this compare to other countries?

According to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development Canada has the 8th highest gender wage gap of 34 industrialized countries and the world economic foundation found that Canada ranks in 30th place, making it 117 years before we would reach gender parity.

Who is most affected by this?

Oxfam Canada found that working full-time aboriginal women made 26 per cent less than non-aboriginal men and women of colour made 32 per cent less than non-racialized men.

What does the UN think about this?

They are not impressed. They have criticized the gap, with a report in July saying it was concerned about ‘the wide pay gap, uneven legislation relating to equal pay and the failure to enforce employment equity in the private sector.’

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Why is there a wage gap?

There are many reasons. One of the biggest ones that is cited is that many women still believe that making this much less is the norm living in Canada and they should just accept it.

Another factor is that men and women tend to have different types of jobs, and the ones women most often work in have lower wages than the ones men often work in.

According to Sarah Kaplan, a professor of strategic management at the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto, maternity is another reason why women are making less then men.

"If [women] do take the time off, they are typically giving up a salary and wage growth right at that crucial moment of their career," Kaplan explained in an interview with the Huffington Post. "This pushes that baseline salary from where future promotions will grow."

Can unions make a difference?

Unions have play a major role when it comes women’s rights in the workplace, including the Teamsters with contracts that have lead the way when it comes to gender equality. According to the Canadian labour Congress, union members earn on average $5.28 per hour more than workers without a union and women earn $7.10 per hour more on average with a union.

A collective agreement can ensure that women will be paid equally for equal work.


Millennial Women Face Gender Pay Gap

Even in 2016, gender inequality is still an issue found in workplaces across the world, including Canada.

The spotlight has been on the issue with a review last year of Canada by the United Nations who found that gender inequality in the workplace is a huge concern, especially when it comes to pay.

According to Catalyst Canada Canadian women earn $0.82 to every $1 earned by men, a gap of 18 per cent. They found that the ‘global pay gap was about $4,000 on average between men and women, and the Canadian pay gap was just over $8,000.’

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And this isn’t just a problem for older generations. Millennials too are entering workplaces where the gender pay gap still exists, especially if it is non-unionized.

Studies have shown that being a member of a union can help narrow the gender wage gap for women. Union members earn on average $5.28 per hour more than workers without a union and women earn $7.10 per hour more on average with a union.

Under no circumstances are there any Teamsters agreements where men and woman receive a different pay rate for the same job. Men and women deserve equal pay and it is something the union strongly believes in.

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As pointed out by an article in The Guardian, this wage gap is something that younger women need to address the first day of their first job, when they are introduced to the wage gap.

The optimism of millennials isn’t going to be enough to solve the problem – they need to take action.

Unions have been fighting for worker’s rights for decades, and joining one offers an opportunity to continue to fight to close the gender pay and aspiration gap.


Global Gender Gap Will Take Over A Century To Close

The good news is that the global pay gap between men and women is expected to close, but the bad news is that it is expected to take over a century.

The World Economic Forum released a Global Gender Gap report was released this week and found that it will take another 118 years, or until 2133, until the global pay gap is closed.

A positive result found in the study was that nearly a quarter of a billion more women are in the global workforce today than a decade ago, and in several countries more women are now going to university than men.

Despite this, the progress on closing the gap has stalled in recent years.

Over all, it found that Nordic countries are at the top of the list – Iceland came in first, followed by Norway, Finland and Sweden.

On the other end of the results Yemen came in last, followed by Pakistan, Syria and Chad.

Canada landed at 30th , with women only earning an average of 82 per cent of what men earn despite the fact that 34 per cent more women than men are going on to post-secondary education.

Canada only ranked 19th in equality of the sexes, because of ‘very low score over numbers of women in legislatures and in managerial positions.'

The report also found that women are ‘only now earning the amount that men did in 2006, a global average of $11,000 US, compared with $20,500 US for men.’ In Canada it estimated that ‘the average male earns the equivalent of $40,000 US, while women earn $32,916.’

Studies have shown that being a member of a union can help narrow the gap for all members of society, including women. Union members earn on average $5.28 per hour more than workers without a union and women earn $7.10 per hour more on average with a union, getting paid more fairly.

Waiting over years for the pay gap to close, is way too long. Both in Canada and globally, we need to see women in more positions of power and earning as much as their male counter parts.


UN Review Of Canada Reveals Concerns About Bill C-51 And Gender Pay Gap

Last week the United Nations released a report reviewing how well Canada has been complying with the international rights treaty. It was the first review of Canada in a decade and there were a few issues that were brought up as a cause for concern for the UN.

One of the concerns was the recent anti-terror legislation brought forward in Canada known as bill C-51.

The bill was passed in the senate in early June and deals with changes in arrest policy, mass surveillance, no fly list and how CSIS defines terrorism and terrorist activity.

Many unions, first nations groups and environmental groups have spoken out against the bill saying it would violate free speech, personal privacy and create a threat to all Canadians' rights.

The way the bill is crafted, a union or civil protest could potentially be defined as a form of ‘terrorist activity.’

According to the Globe and Mail the report from the UN said the government should consider rewriting the law so that it ‘doesn’t lead to human rights abuses’ and the report was also concerned about an increase in ‘information sharing.’

“The State party should refrain from adopting legislation that imposes undue restrictions on the exercise of rights under the Covenant,” the report stated.

The article by the Globe and Mail said that a spokesperson for Public Safety Minister Stephen Blaney said that Canada stands by the current anti-terrorism bill.

Another major concern from the report was gender equality, especially when it comes to pay in the workplace. They recommended that Canada make more of an effort to ensure that men and women, especially minority and indigenous women, are paid equally for work.

According to Catalyst Canada Canadian women earn $0.82 to every $1 earned by men, a gap of 18 per cent. They found that the ‘global pay gap was about $4,000 on average between men and women, and the Canadian pay gap was just over $8,000.’