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Directors’ Statement for Equal Pay Day 2024 [April 16, 2024]

April 5, 2024

It’s theft! The gender pay gap takes money out of women’s pockets

Starting in April each year, we mark Equal Pay Day. It’s a time for our union to take stock of what we’ve done – and what we still need to do – to advance women’s economic equality.

That’s because Equal Pay Day shows how many extra days into 2024 it takes the average Canadian woman to earn as much as the average man earned in the twelve months of 2023. She had to work 472 days to the average man’s 365 to earn the same pay. In other words, about 30% less. And that’s just an average:

  • First Nations, Inuit, and Black women earn 42% less. That means 518 days to catch up to what an average man earns in 365
  • Women with disabilities earn 43% less or 522 days
  • Women of Arab ancestry earn 47% less or 537 days

And what makes it worse is that the gender pay gap exists for no good or scientific reason. Women are paid less on average purely because of historic and continuing discrimination. Women’s jobs and women’s lives are undervalued.

We can all help close the gender pay gap. We can take concrete steps to close it at the bargaining table. We can enforce the Pay Equity Act in our federally-regulated sectors and in provinces with proactive legislation. We help close the gender pay gap at the ballot box by supporting parties who will increase the minimum wage, bring in $10-a-day child care, or make it easier to join a union.

Let’s turn up the pressure on employers and governments to end the blatant robbery of women’s wages.  Otherwise, we leave money in the employers’ hands for no good reason.

In solidarity,

Marty Warren
USW National Director

Scott Lunny
USW District 3 Director (Western Canada and the Territories)

Dominic Lemieux
USW District 5 Director (Québec)

Myles Sullivan
USW District 6 Director (Ontario and Atlantic Canada)

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