Pay equity is equal pay for work of equal or comparable value. The skills, knowledge, effort and working conditions of historically female-dominated jobs such as those in the administrative, health and social service sectors have not been fairly considered, resulting in these positions being undervalued and underpaid. A majority of women still work in these sectors, and pay inequity is a major reason why women still only make 70 cents for every dollar that men make.
To implement pay equity, an evaluation is done that involves a comparison of four factors (skills, responsibility, effort and working conditions) of jobs traditionally/predominantly held by women with jobs traditionally/predominantly held by men. Pay equity adjustments are then made.
Pay equity is not only a matter of justice and fairness — workers, many of them women workers, getting more fair compensation for their work — it’s also a matter of working towards the elimination of social inequalities along gender lines that lead to horrendous social problems like domestic abuse and sexual violence.
The N.B. Coalition for Pay Equity has been active in attempting to legislate pay equity for public and private sectors in the province of New Brunswick. We also lobby municipalities to take a position on pay equity, implement pay equity for their own employees and support province-wide pay equity legislation for all workers. The towns of Memramcook and Quispamsis achieved pay equity for their workers in 2009. Dieppe is currently undergoing a pay equity implementation process.
The Fredericton Committee of the N.B. Coalition for Pay Equity has sent a letter to all candidates running for municipal office in Fredericton asking them where they stand on pay equity and whether they would support pay equity for City of Fredericton employees. We encourage the voting public to do the same and ask their candidates where they stand on the important topic of pay equity.
More information about pay equity can be found online on the NB Coalition for Pay Equity website.