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Media Advisory: Equal Pay Day is April 4, 2023

Press Release

TORONTO, April 03, 2023 — Strong public services play a critical role in narrowing the gender pay gap and promoting economic equality for women. Public services provide women with access to affordable childcare, healthcare, education, community services to support victims of domestic violence and other essential resources that allow them to work, advance in their careers, and support their families.

Privatization undermines women’s gains and widens the gender pay gap. Privatization means lower wages for women workers, reduced benefits, no pension coverage, more precarious jobs, and fewer workplace rights. When public services are diminished and delivered for profit, women can’t afford to pay. Women are forced to fill the care gaps in delivering health and social services for their families and their communities.

This year Equal Pay Day is on April 4, 2023 because women, on average, need to work 15.5 months – 3.5 months into the new year – to earn what a man does in 12 months. On Equal Pay Day, the Ontario Equal Pay Coalition will hold a press conference to tell the stories of front-line women workers as they say no to privatization and call on the provincial government to rebuild public services and implement pay transparency.

What: Equal Pay Coalition Press Conference
Where: Queen’s Park Media Studio, Ontario Legislative Building,
111 Wellesley Street West, Toronto
When: Tuesday April 4, 2023, 9:30 a.m.
Who: Patty Coates, Education worker and President, Ontario Federation of Labour.
Martha Hradowy, Education worker, Vice-President, OSSTF/FEESO.
Mina Amrith, Registered Practical Nurse, SEIU Healthcare.
Kryzya Mae Razal Barrameda, Childcare worker, OCBCC
Sami Pritchard, YWCA Interim Director of Advocacy.
Janet Borowy, co-chair, Equal Pay Coalition,
Fay Faraday, co-chair, Equal Pay Coalition

Recognized globally, Equal Pay Day is a global event to end the gender pay gap and to call on government leaders to advance women’s economic equality.

Watch the Coalition new videos here:

Quotes from Equal Pay Coalition members for Equal Pay Day:

“This Equal Pay Day we’re saying: enough is enough. When government services are privatized, women – especially Black, Indigenous, and other equity-deserving women – experience significant declines in how much they earn and in their health and pension coverage. Privatization, and the de-unionization that frequently accompanies it, is detrimental to the economic welfare of women workers. No to privatization!”
Patty Coates, President, Ontario Federation of Labour.

“The government’s approach to privatization of health care shows the importance of using an intersectional gender-based approach (“GBA+”) to analysing funding and policy decisions. When governments don’t use a GBA+ approach – they ignore the negative impacts of their policies on women, gender diverse people, those with disabilities, Indigenous peoples, and those who are racialized. The Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario has found that a lack of an intersectional gender-based approach by government in their compensation setting practices has negatively impacted midwives – widening the gender pay gap for the profession. Midwives are still waiting for the government to implement the recommendations in a Tribunal-ordered GBA+ report. The government must use a GBA+ approach in its budgeting and policy making – if we are to create a society that works for us all.” Jasmin Tecson, RM, President, Association of Ontario Midwives.

“Each day thousands of women go to work on the frontlines to care for people with intellectual disabilities, for seniors, for women and children fleeing from violence. This care work is essential and important. Without it, our families and communities would be in dire need. Yet those doing this work, mostly women and many racialized, are drastically overworked and underpaid. Enough is enough. Stop treating care work as discount labour.”
Laurie Nancekivell, Secretary-Treasurer, OPSEU/SEFPO

“For profit health care has led to worse quality, higher prices for the taxpayer, removes workers from public health institutions, means paying less and keeps wages in public institutions low. For profit health care hurts women.”
Sandra Shaw, Canadian Federation of University Women.

“Unions are one of the most powerful tools in the fight for equal pay. Through collective bargaining, pay transparency, and social activism unions bend employers toward equity and work to dismantle misogyny in all its forms across our society. On Equal Pay Day, Unifor will continue to demand action to deliver on promises of pay equity and gender equality.”
Lana Payne, Unifor National President.

“The Ford government has continually undermined the work of women, who comprise much of the public sector workforce. This government has artificially and unconstitutionally suppressed public sector wages through Bill 124, and they’re increasingly taking money away from public services to increase privatization. Privatization goes against the goal of equal pay and erodes our critical public services. On behalf of the more than 60,000 education workers and teachers that make up the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation, I call on the Ford government to commit to Pay Equity and protect Ontario’s public services.” Martha Hradowy, Vice-President, OSSTF/FEESO

Contact Coalition co-chairs Fay Faraday 416-389-4399 or Jan Borowy 416-985-2069 for information.


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