Why is it so hard to close the gender wage gap?

By Kate McInturff

The wage gap is pretty easy to understand. I do a job. You do a job. I get paid more. You get paid less. Unfair. Especially if you and I have the same training, work the same hours, and perform the same kind of tasks. And yet, the gender wage gap persists, right here in Canada, even when education, occupation, experience, and hours of work are considered. The gap is even bigger for Indigenous women, racialized women, immigrant women, and women with disabilities.

Still skeptical? Consider McMaster University. They looked at men and women doing exactly the same job (university professor), at the same place, adjusted for years of work, number of publications, tenure, and rank and they still found that women were paid less than men. More than $3,000 a year less.

So the wage gap is a real thing. And it’s pretty easy to understand that it’s not fair. So why is this problem so hard to fix?

Continue Reading (Behind the Numbers, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives):

Kate McInturff is a senior researcher with the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.


Key income data goes missing

Understanding what has been happening in recent years with income inequality in Canada is vitally important.

What do we know, for example, about the incidence of low income and poverty, or the impact of taxes and income transfers on the level and distribution of family income? What are the differences in income across provinces, or between different kinds of families, such as seniors and lone-parent families? More pressingly from a public policy perspective, what difference has government policy made to the economic well-being of Canadian families and to the fairness and equity of Canadian society?

Answering these questions relies on having sound data that are reliable and comparable over time.

As Statistics Canada itself notes: “Governments use income statistics to develop income support programs and social services, such as the Canada Child Tax Benefit, Employment Insurance, provincial income supplements, and welfare payments.Private sector and public sector researchers as well as academics also use data on income, low income, income inequality and earnings from income surveys to study labour markets, industrial patterns or changes in family situations.”

With the release today of Statistics Canada’s Canadian Income Survey, there is now a major gap in these important statistics that make it very difficult to know if there have been important changes to the Canadian social and economic fabric.

Continue reading (The Broadbent Blog): http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog/key-income-data-goes-missing

Andrew Jackson is a Senior Policy Advisor to the Broadbent Institute.