Despite efforts to diversify corporate boards and include more women, female executives are still a rarity and earn much less than their male counterparts, according to a new report from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.
It found only four per cent of chief executive officers in Canada are women and they make up just 10 per cent of the country’s senior executives. In addition, women who do make it to the upper echelons of the corporate world are still earning significantly less, at 68 cents for every dollar received by their male counterparts.
As such, the limited number of women who are part of Canada’s c-suite receive an average of $950,000 less per year than male executives, a phenomenon the report calls the double glass ceiling.
It also found the gender pay gap between male and female executives is more dramatic than among managers and entry-level workers. The average female worker earns 83 cents for every dollar earned by a man, while the average female senior manager earns 86 cents for every dollar earned by a male manager.
The possible reasons for female executives making less were numerous and potentially interwoven, noted the report, citing factors such as women not being able to gain the same experience as male colleagues due to a tendency to take breaks from full-time work to care for children or senior family members; industry segregation where pay is lower in female-dominated industries; and direct gender discrimination.
While women executives are rare around the world, Canada lags behind other countries, the report found. Among G7 countries, Canada is fourth in female CEOs, tied with France. Germany, Japan, and Norway had no female CEOs as of 2016. And Italy, the United Kingdom and the United States all outpace Canada, with the former two reaching just seven per cent.