Equity is a fundamental human right misused in different context around the world. Notably, many nations have arguably re-established human rights in different fields. Pay equity is one field that has attracted attention from various stakeholders and represented groups. In Canada, for instance, the difference between pay equality and pay equity for the feminist gender has shifted from the main course (Chen 51). The Canadian Human rights Act protects all employs under pay equality to ensure all people receive the same, right and adequate payment for work conducted. In this regards, pay equality under the Ontario Employment standards ensure both women and Men receive the same amount of pay for the same job (Singh and Ping 571). Pay equity, on the other hand, is a complex phenomenon that has resulted to disregard of the woman gender. In many instances women, receive less pay as compared to men under the same job group. Notably, Women have made remarkable strides in post secondary education, universal daycare and family matters. However, the inclining pay equity towards one gender has significantly introduced hurdles in the business, politics and other professions. Therefore, in as much as more has been done to elevate women, deep and long connections are still necessary in pay equity.
The objective of pay equity is to eradicate gender-based wage discrimination through equity obligations. According to research, Women have great qualifications; however, gender domination in various working environments has led to pay discrimination. In 2007, the National Association of Women and the Law held a meeting in collaboration with the Canadian Labor Congress. The main objective of the meeting was to highlight the many challenges women face in the mixed working environment (Risk 31). The inspiring meeting piled pressure on the ineffective Canadian federal system, which includes the Human rights Act. Based on the Act, it is illegal for employers to establish different wages for employees performing the same work value. Despite having this Act, pay equity is still a problem as women receive less reward in the composite of similar responsibility, efforts and skills (Sulzner 91). The discrimination significantly affects women’s involvement in national matters. Pay equity is about appreciating the efforts of many women who beat odds in the world dominated by men.
Notably, women are responsible for lodging pay equity complaints to the Canadian Human Rights Commission. However, the lengthy process of investigation has proven to be a barrier towards realizing justices (Herbert 45). As a result, many women continue to suffer from the meager payments that employers accord them in the same job values. For instance, in the process of investigation, a Canadian Human Rights Tribunal mainly dominated by men is responsible for analyzing the evidence and making decisions. In the long process, women receive frustrations and threats from the employers leaving women with no option but to chose outside court settlements. From this perspective, the already disadvantaged women are liable to failure in life as compared to supreme men who receive more than they deserve. In 1991, an Air Canada flight attendant through the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) fronted a complaint to unfair wages as compared to pilots and mechanics (Sulzner 93). Interestingly, the case took 15 years to reach the first stage of hearing. This is because Air Canada claimed the woman’s complaint was not within work establishments as proclaimed in the Act. Because of pressure, the commissions held a hearing; however, Air Canada raised objections based on establishments. To further frustrate the air hostess, the commissions referred the case to Canadian Human right Tribunal, which presented a decision in favor of the airline company (Singh and Ping 573).
Pilots and flight attendants have the same working environments experiencing the same death threats. A decision to award the airline company, therefore, is a clear manifestation of the superiority, which exists between pilots and attendants. Notably, it took 15 years to get the negative decision, which presented no guidelines to the women grievances. In as much as the fight is still on characterized by appeals, the main problem of payment still exists (Sacks and Catherine 91). Many flight attendant mainly women, still receive the meager packages while they receive the same death threats as compared to pilots. In a survey conducted the workers union, women resolve to low-rent houses as compared to men to enjoy the luxurious life of bungalows (Risk 27). The need for wage adjustments, therefore, is inevitable for women to realize a pay equity.
To resolve the pay equity differences, a clear and defined boundary for employers in necessary. Evidently, Canadian employers have no acceptable methods and standards of enlisting pay equity. The vague legislation limits job evaluation hence becoming a nightmare for non-unionized women. Most employers in the Canadian regime find it interesting to have legal battles than pay women the right amount (Sacks and Catherine 54). This is because they find favor in the ambiguous court terms and Acts that provide immunity to the powerful individuals. In addition, the courts give preference to establishments rather than merits of the aggrieved parties. It is in this regards that many women suffer in silence as not even the legal systems provide the relevant solutions to their problems. The limitations, therefore, have worsened the bright future of women who fail to exploit their potential. Psychologically women cannot engage in a competitive job group for fear of victimizations. Naturally, women are potential leaders who are extremely effective under pressure and demanding work conditions. Efforts to demine these traits are detrimental towards realizing a full-blown economic system (Sulzner 96). Pay equity principles support impartiality in job categorization for all genders based on proficiency, effort, and working environment using a dispassionate system.
Cataloging jobs should be on the matching basis and priorities of equal pay for both female and male employees. Realizing pay equity needs a gender inclusive analysis (Herbert 10). This system appreciates the diversity between men and women in the society. With a spotlight on the provincial level of government, New Brunswick adopted Bill 87, Pay Equity Act, 2009. The bill introduced by Mary Schryer in 2009 championed for the implementation of pay Equity. Notably, the legislation provides for equal and fair pay considerations for both genders in all sectors of the public and private service. It encourages the espousal of a non-discriminatory job evaluation system for all genders in New Brunswick. Before the preamble of pay equity legislation, men earned higher pay than women counterparts because of discriminatory job evaluation system. Despite the high efforts by women for pay equity, there are still challenges of discriminatory job assessment systems (Risk 5). Biased and unfair job evaluation systems applied have extensive impacts on the economy and social welfare of families especially those headed by women. For example, in a case filed against the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in 1999, little results prevailed. In the case, a CBC production assistant challenged the wage inequity in the camera technician level working the same institution. In response, the case was referred to the Tribunal where CBC won claiming lack of procedural fairness. After consistent appeals, the federal court ordered for a fresh investigation in 2005. Notably, the case is still under investigation to date leaving women under problems of meeting their financial expectations.
Pay equity dominance in Canada expanded with the introduction of free trade agreements in the Canadian Labor market. The trade agreements act as constitutional documents, hence shielding employers against the employee’s legal grievances. The neo-liberalism embraced by Canada at the national level manifests in the social and economic policies (Risk 23). The commercialized profit making led to privatization of many government functions, thereby holding the government ransom at the expense of pay inequality. For instance, Neo-liberalism introduced active labor market policies that included economic re-structuring and competitive austerity to the standard male employment. Arguably, neo-liberalization widened the gap between women and men labor experiences. Women, therefore, have to start working at lower positions as compared to me to jump hurdles and have proliferated advantages. On the other hand, women have limited job security, a strategy towards curtailing the worse wages (Singh and Ping 575). In this regards, pay equity subject women to the incidence of poverty as compared to men. Therefore, is not checked, the Canadian wage market is likely to experience widening wage deficits.
Globalization requires governments to formulate economic efficiency policies. However, this will be useless to the Canadian working population if pay equity remains a general problem in the country (Sacks and Catherine 65). This calls for substantive legal norms, which are inter-sectoral and institutionalized. There is a need to create a synergy between political, economic and social components of the society. Econometric analysis of Ontario’s pay equity legislation points out various deficiencies. It is in this regards that the efforts have massively failed to address women grievances (Sulzner 111). There is a need to restructure employment conditions and asses labour laws in the era of globalization. Consequently, feminist labor needs to develop legislations protecting women from exploitation from fellow men who consider women as disadvantages. The Pay Equity Act, for instance, needs more attention to merge the marginalized women population of Canada. Many female scholars tend to concentrate on women in lowly paid sectors. As a result, the attention towards pay equity has received limited concentration (Singh and Ping 577). In as much as these sectors are also important, dire need lies on the ability of women to shift the revolutionized focus. This is because most governments attempt to improve working conditions of women while disregarding gender-pay discriminations.
The long-standing exclusion of women in resolving pay equity has significantly worsened the capacity of women to deliver. This is despite various efforts to reduce pay equity differences. Notably, the working class women have their economic interests buried in the absence of consideration. In resolving pay equity, stringent and comprehensive policies are vital. This is only possible under active participation of women in the policy making process (Hart 509). Consequently, there is a need to reshape existing policy documents that flaw fundamental human privilege instead of ensuring justice. Importantly, there is a need to formulate powerful and decisive labor unions, which can efficiently represent women in various forums. This will not only exploit the full potential of women but also build their capacity to indulge in political, social and economic activities.
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Hart, Susan. Unions and pay equity bargaining in Canada. Relations Industrielles 2002, 57 (4): p. 609.
Herbert, Cheril. An Integrated Approach to Policy or Program Developent: Guidelines for Gender inclusive Analysis. The Women’s Policy Office, St. John’s NL. 2003. Print.
Risk, Shannon. “In Order To Establish Justice”: The Nineteenth-Century Woman Suffrage Movements Of Maine And New Brunswick. Thesis. M.A. University of Maine, 1996. 2009. Print.
Sacks, Nancy, and Catherine Marrone. Gender And Work In Today’s World a Reader.. New York: Westview Press, 2009. Print.
Singh, Parbudyal, and Ping Peng. “Canada’s Bold Experiment With Pay Equity.” Gender in Management: An International Journal 25.7 (2010): 570-585. Print.
Sulzner, George T.. “A Pay Equity Saga: The Public Service Alliance Of Canada Vs. The Treasury Board Of Canada Secretariat.” Journal of Collective Negotiations in the Public Sector 29.2 (2000): 89-122. Print.