…Calgary was near the bottom of the list, coming in at 23rd spot.
The big reason for that was a lack of leadership roles for women. The study points out women hold only two city council seats and when it comes to women in senior management positions, Calgary women hold only 29 per cent of these positions.
Woman in Calgary, even those working full-time, still earn only 65 per cent of what men earn in the city.
It may be the case that there are only two women on city council, but women seem to like the current mayor – even more so than men do. It also overlooks the eight female MLAs in Calgary, not to mention the fact that Alberta has a female Premier.
Aside from that is the bigger question, though, of whether women fare worse in Calgary. The report cites the pay gap which they say is much larger in Calgary. But does that tell the whole story.
…Calgary, Edmonton and Kitchener-Waterloo rank at the bottom. The CCPA report specifically cites the fact that these cities feature “predominantly male industries” such as “oilsands, construction and IT.” In other words, the CCPA is pointing out industries that pay higher wages, and where women are underrepresented. A logical conclusion might be to somehow get more women into these trades, but the CCPA isn’t interested in that.
For one thing, this report doesn’t objectively compare the plight of women in one city to women in another. Under the CCPA formula, if oilsands workers took a big wage hit, Calgary’s ranking would rise. How would that benefit women in Calgary?
The fact is, though, Alberta has the highest average wage, highest median wage and highest average hourly wage for women. Calgary’s rate of female employment is second only to Regina’s.
Alberta has the country’s highest paid teachers and highest paid nurses, two examples of professions with high female representation. If the CCPA’s objective is to ensure that women are earning more, one would think these facts would be noted.
But here’s the big problem with the CCPA and its defenders: the wage gap is nowhere near what they claim it is. This report, for example, cites Statistics Canada several times, but avoids a major conclusion from StatsCan: “among full-time workers … employed in broadly comparable industries and occupations, women’s wages amounted to 92 per cent of men’s wages in 2011.”
So perhaps this study should be taken with a considerable grain of salt.