Gender wage gap for B.C. women in workforce prompts calls for change

WATCH: When it comes to bridging the wage gender gap Canada is lagging far behind other countries, according to a new report out today. But as Grace Ke reports BC’s business community is working together to try to change that.

VANCOUVER – When it comes to bridging the gender wage gap, Canada is lagging far behind other countries according to a new report out today.

The study finds women in this country make, on average, $8,000 less than men for comparable jobs – almost twice the global average.

But B.C.’s business community is working together to try to change that.

The report by the WEB Alliance and called Women as a Catalyst for Growth: A BC Action Planfinds some of the barriers for women could be stereotypes, lack of workplace flexibility, lack of supportive senior male leadership, gender bias and peoples’ own mindset.

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The WEB Alliance, which represents 25 business networks for women in B.C., says this is a time when consideration of the gender gap in the workplace is on the rise.

“A clear business case has emerged out of our work in compiling and releasing this Action Plan. There is an essential economic need to increase awareness and take swift action in supporting career growth for women in Canada,” says Jill Earthy, co-chair of the report and forum and co-founder of the WEB Alliance, in a release. “We have an opportunity in B.C. to be leaders in taking action, and this report will directly contribute to that.”

WATCH: Jill Earthy and Lois Nahirny join Global News to talk about their new study and get their ideas on what can be done

The report makes several recommendations for government and industry, including promoting and advocating diversity, fostering positive and self-affirming mindsets, incorporating a diversity focus in early education and engaging men as active participants and critical partners.

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“This Action Plan represents an incredible collaboration of people and organizations from across B.C., who aim to grow the economic impact of women. Never before have so many come together for this purpose,” says Lois Nahirney, report and forum co-chair, in a release. “We have outlined steps that government, industry, and individuals can take to enhance opportunities for women, beginning today. The impact comes from everyone taking action now.”


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