The Power Gap – Will it Ever End?
Not that long ago we posted recent statistics gathered by the CBA on the issue of inequality of pay and power positions in the legal profession (read that blog post here) followed closely by our blog focusing on the data related to the medical profession (read that one here). Now we see the Globe and Mail take a deep dive into this issue in its Power Gap series. The first of the series was published January 21, 2021 and is linked here (a subscription may be necessary to access the article). The data behind the article is remarkably detailed and frankly disappointing. Can you believe that in 1951 equal pay legislation was first introduced in Canada and that women overtook men among university graduates over three decades ago and yet men still “out number, out rank and out earn women”? This is true across a broad spectrum of organizations both public and private.
The data collected is impressive and sadly shows that women still lag behind men not only at the top of the sectors analyzed but on the way to the top too. I suppose it should not shock me to be reminded that women who are equally ranked to men by way of position in an organization still earn less. Further, the data shows that men still outnumber women in management and at the executive leadership level. And these conclusions don’t really touch the inequalities that exist for women racially identified. This inequality appears to be much much greater.
Summarizing the data the authors were able to say that it has been 10 years since the wage gap has changed in any significant way and that women lag behind men by “generations”. This topic seems to have been tucked under the rug but maybe with this new data and attention to the issue the problem will be addressed, at least in the sectors identified. As a personal aside I was most taken aback by the data relating to Universities. How could it possibly be that our educational institutions allow this gap to continue? I ask that particularly since women outnumber men in university attendance.
We will continue to do our best to share this kind of data because it is only by drawing attention to the problem and talking about it that we will be able to even begin to address it. We are hoping to see the specific data as it relates to our legal sector soon but in the meantime let’s continue to give this issue as much face time as we can and continue to advocate for change.
If anyone wants to share their views on how we can collectively work to narrow the gap please let us know by sending us an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or submitting a question though our Dear LiL blog.