Federal government publishes employment equity regulations

The federal government is introducing new pay transparency regulations for federally regulated, private sector employers with 100 or more employees.

The legislative amendment to the Equity Act, which will take effect on Jan. 1, 2021, aims to help address equality and inclusion issues in the workplace.

With the move, Canada will be the first country to make wage gap information for women, Indigenous people, persons with disabilities and members of visible minorities working in federally regulated workplaces publicly available. The government published a report on pay equity in late 2018 after consulting with some 40 stakeholders in moving forward with pay equity legislation.

Read: Federal government publishes report on pay equity

“We always need to look to the future. . . . [We’re making] meaningful and lasting change to help Canadian workers and workplaces get ahead and make Canada an even better place to work,” said Filomena Tassi, Canada’s minister of labour, in a press release. “These pay transparency measures will help Canadian workplaces become more just, inclusive, diverse, and ultimately more productive.”

In addition, starting June 1, 2022, employers will be required to include aggregated wage gap information in their annual reporting on employment equity. These new measures align with other key changes the federal government is making, such as implementing the Pay Equity Act, workplace harassment and violence prevention regulations and a new administrative monetary penalties regime. 

Read: Feds introducing new regulations to prevent workplace harassment, violence