On Aug. 31, the new Canada Pay Equity Act came into effect across the country. Its purpose was to address systemic and persistent pay discrimination issues within organizations that has disadvantaged women workers for decades. This new act will require federally regulated organizations, with 10 or more employees, to create a pay equity plan for their organization to adhere to within three years. For an organizational compliance with this act, a detailed, step-by-step and standardized process will need to be followed.
What is pay equity and why is it important?
It’s pretty simple: pay equity is equal pay for equal work. There continues to be a large disparity where employers are still not paying women the same as men for equal value work. In today’s work environment, this is simply not acceptable and, as a result, pay inequity remains an issue. Society has changed and workplace requirements and expectations have changed. Many organizations don’t realize that non-compliance with pay equity considerations has been illegal for forty years under the Canadian Human Rights Act. Unfortunately, the reporting system for inequities in pay was a user-based, complaint-based structure. Combined with a culture of pay secrecy that dominated the workplace, this resulted in difficulties to have widespread compliance and impact.
How can organizations become compliant with the new Canada Pay Equity Act?
There are a number of steps an organization can take to solidify their pay equity processes, including:
- Conduct a pay equity act audit
- Use the act as a template to correct pay gaps beyond gender.
- Ensure all people managers are very literate on the issues.
- Voluntarily disclose your statistics and methodology to all employees, and share your detailed plan to correct pay gaps and maintain equity.
- Determine what caused gaps in pay equity in the first place.
This list of suggestions are only a few of the ideas an organization can follow for compliance and recognize the inequalities within its pay structure. The Canada Pay Equity Act is crucial to ensure that pay inequity is eliminated. For more detail on how your organization can approach the Canada Pay Equity Act in an informed and intentional way, please read the entire article here.