Rachel Notley's NDP government made history last year for electing a record number of women to the Alberta legislature, but gender parity in many of the province's public offices is a different story.
An analysis done by the Edmonton Journal found that only 29 per cent of deputy and associate ministers across provincial government departments are women. That number will drop to 25 per cent when culture and tourism deputy minister Carolyn Campbell leaves her position next month.
The City of Edmonton fared even worse, with only six of 32 management roles occupied by women at 19 per cent.
The numbers are below United Nations' guidelines, which state that 30 per cent of government roles should be held by women as a benchmark for gender equality.
Goal should be '50 per cent women'
Coun. Bev Esslinger is the lone woman on Edmonton's city council, but she hopes that will change.
“I would love to see more women on council. I think it would bring different perspectives to the table,” Esslinger told Global News.
“I also think your city council should be reflective of the community they live in. We know there’s 50 per cent women in Edmonton so it should be reflective.”
Other employers in the province are even further behind.
Calgary Coun. Diane Colley-Urquhart pushed for the Calgary Police Service to undergo a gender equality review in late February, after discovering only 18 per cent of sworn members are female.
“It truly is a glass ceiling and a lot of the reasons the chief gave relating to the police service are comparable to the private sector or industry — and industry seems to be doing better," Colley-Urquhart told Metro News.
Alberta women also face largest wage gap
The number of women in public office is just one area that needs improvement.
A study last year found that the province has the largest gender pay gap in Canada, with a wage difference of 42 per cent.
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Over the course of her career, a woman will lose an average of $431,000 because of the gender pay gap. Source: WhiteHouse.gov, 6/4/2011. Image Courtesy of Lorien Barlow.
The most common occupation for women today is the same as it was fifty years ago: Secretary. Source & Image Courtesy of Lorien Barlow.
Proportion of women in senior management: Russia: 43% China: 38% U.S.: 22% Denmark: 14% Japan: 9% European businesses are amongst the most likely globally to have no women at all in their senior teams. While in Germany, 67% of business have no women in senior management, 63% of business in China have a woman as CFO. Source: Grant Thornton. Image Courtesy of Lorien Barlow.
In G-rated family films from 1990-2010, 80.5% of all working characters are male and only 19.5% are female. Source: The Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media. Image Courtesy of Lorien Barlow.
The company GoldieBlox developed a set of interactive books and games to “disrupt the pink aisle and inspire the future generation of female engineers” and came up with a brilliant commercial. GoldieBlox was, however, sued by the Beastie Boys for using a parody of the song “Girls”. Image Courtesy of Lorien Barlow.
Women currently hold only %5 of Fortune 500 CEO positions. Source: Catalys.org Image Courtesy of Lorien Barlow.
Substantially more women than men are in jobs that pay the minimum wage or less, according to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data analyzed by the Pew Research Center. Among those who earn the minimum wage or less, 62% are women and 38% are men. Source: Pew Research and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Image Courtesy of Lorien Barlow.
Only 0.1% of Brickmasons, Blockmasons and Stonemasons are women. Source: Catalys.org Image Courtesy of Lorien Barlow.
94% of all the writing awards at the Oscars have gone to men. Source: A Room of Her Own - A Foundation For Women Writers and Artists. Image Courtesy of Lorien Barlow.
“It's sort of a sad joke in the [construction] industry — the girl always does coffee duty.” - Lorien Barlow