Equal Pay Coalition – equalpaycoalition.org
January 18, 2016
- Women in Ontario have the fundamental human right to be free from systemic sex discrimination in pay. A “right” is just that – it is a legal entitlement that must be enforced. It is not a privilege. It is not an option. It must be secured. The current 31.5% gender pay gap is a human rights crisis which must be addressed as such.
- International, national and Ontario provincial human rights standards require that Ontario women in all their diversity be afforded economic equality in Ontario’s labour
- The gender pay gap is a key measure for identifying whether, overall, Ontario women have achieved their fundamental human right to economic When Ontario women earn on average the same as Ontario men each year – in other words, when there is a 0% gender pay gap – a key dimension of gender equality in employment will be achieved.
- Recommendations to close the gender pay gap as proposed in this submission are the human rights enforcement mechanisms for eradicating women’s labour market discrimination and ensuring equality
- Preventing and remedying pay discrimination is a matter of values. Ensuring that hard work is honoured and rewarded in Ontario regardless of the sex of the person who performs it.
- The Equal Pay Coalition has called on Premier Wynne and the business community to set 2025 as the deadline to end gender pay inequality in this province. This is the target date by which Ontario’s gender pay gap should be reduced to 0%. This is also the year set by law when Ontario is to be free of barriers for persons with disabilities.
- The design of closing the Gender Pay Gap strategies must begin by directly acknowledging and confronting the fact that the pay gap arises from systemic discrimination against women. The reality is that Ontario men’s and women’s lives are profoundly different and unequal and those who suffer from additional discrimination face much higher gaps which need to be addressed
- Ensuring that this human rights goal is met requires mandatory human rights analysis and planning using a gender and equity lens at all levels of government and in workplaces and communities across the province. This includes short- and long-term plans, goals, targets and monitoring of results.
- Reorienting the dialogue to focus on the priority human rights mandate, with a set compliance date and a gender based planning/action/monitoring focus is essential if there is serious commitment to closing Ontario’s gender pay gap.
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