Monitoring Programs of Individual Workplaces
In addition to investigating pay equity related complaints, the Pay Equity Office also monitors individual workplaces in Ontario to enforce the Pay Equity Act. The Act requires every employer in Ontario (private sector with ten or more employees and all public sector) to have compensation practices that provide for pay equity. The focus of the various monitoring programs is to encourage employers to assess their current compensation practices to provide for pay equity. In addition to our monitoring programmes, monitoring files are regularly opened following the resolution of a complaint investigation, where there is information that the establishment has not achieved or maintained pay equity for all female job classes. Monitoring activities are reported in our Annual Report.
Final reports on past monitoring programs are available upon request.
Previous reports prepared by the Pay Equity Office
The Service Industry Monitoring Program 2007-2010
Report: 2011 Gender Wage Gap Pilot Program
Report: Proxy Use and Outcomes in the Broader Public Sector 2009/2010 to the Ministers of Finance, Labour and Women's Issues
In 2017-18, the Pay Equity Office's monitoring priorities include:
1) Delivery of a monitoring program of Ontario companies participating in Ontario Government's Vendor of Record procurement programs, to ensure that they can provide evidence of compliance with the provincial legislation.
The 2016 Report of the UN Secretary-General's High-Level Panel on Women's Economic Empowerment entitled Leave No One Behind: A Call to Action For Gender Equality and Women's Economic Empowerment highlighted the importance of government procurement programs in driving change towards women's equality. It noted that the public sector can lead by implementing policies to promote inclusive growth and women's economic empowerment, and by improving public sector practices in employment and procurement. Monitoring the businesses within Ontario's Vendor of Record procurement programs can assist by changing business culture and practices, and hold procurement decision makers accountable.
2) Delivery of a monitoring program of Ontario-based companies who are part of the Federal Government contractors list, to ensure that they can provide evidence of compliance with the provincial legislation.
In June 2016, the House of Commons' Special Committee on Pay Equity released a report IT'S TIME TO ACT: Report of the Special Committee on Pay Equity and provided 31 recommendations. One of the recommendations was that the Government of Canada draft proactive gender pay equity legislation such that it applies to the federal public service, Crown corporations, all federally-regulated companies with 15 employees or more, and companies participating in the Federal Contractors Program. It further recommended that companies within the Federal Contractors Program that already report to provincial jurisdictions with pay equity legislation,that could provide evidence of compliance with the provincial legislation, should be exempted from federal pay equity plan, monitoring and reporting obligations.
3) New Employer Monitoring Program focused on employers who have been in business for three years, have 10 or more employees, and are located in specified municipalities within Western Ontario, Eastern Ontario and Northern Ontario.
The key benefit to contacting new employers is to raise awareness and compliance of pay equity while a company is new. Early compliance minimizes the risk of large adjustments being paid out, should it be deemed that Employers are not in compliance. In addition, in 2017-18, PEO will develop a plan to monitor employers in Ontario's innovation sectors in 2018-19, as digital transformation is creating new professional prospects for women. Staff will consider developing a 2018-19 monitoring program with a representative sample of select employers in some of Ontario's innovation clusters.
PEO's new monitoring program focuses on the government's innovation agenda, and ensures that the selected employers in this sector can provide evidence of compliance with the provincial legislation, particularly since many of them may be newer companies expecting growth.