March 4, 2024
“Ford’s attack on women’s wages”: new report shows real dollar wage cuts in public sector have widened gender pay gap in Ontario

TORONTO – In just six years, the average wages earned by workers in the female-dominated sectors of health care, education and social assistance declined by nine per cent relative to men’s wages across the Ontario economy, according to a new research report titled “Women’s wages and the attack on broader public sector workers.”

Using latest data from Statistics Canada, the report by CUPE’s Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (OCHU-CUPE) reveals that the Ford government’s policies have led to real dollar wage cuts in the broader public sector, where most workers are women. In contrast, workers elsewhere in the economy outperformed inflation by seven per cent during the 2017-2023 period.

More than 90 per cent of the broader public sector workers are employed in health care, education, and social assistance. Workers in these industries also constitute 32 per cent of all women employees in Ontario.

The Ford government’s attack on these workers has thus contributed to an increase in the gender pay gap in the province. OCHU-CUPE says the consequences of these actions are also being felt by the wider public, as wage cuts are to blame for a staffing crisis in hospitals.

The complete findings of the research report will be announced by OCHU-CUPE at a news conference at Queen’s Park on Tuesday afternoon.

Who: Sharon Richer, secretary-treasurer of OCHU/CUPE, Pam Parks, registered practical nurse and president of CUPE 6364, Jillian Watt, environmental aide and president of CUPE 7800

What: OCHU/CUPE Media Conference to announce findings of the research report “Women’s Wages & the Attack on the Broader Public Sector”

When: 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 5

Where: Queen’s Park Media Studio, Toronto

For more information contact: Zaid Noorsumar CUPE Communications 647-995-9859