Pay Equity

Pay equity: New filing and committee appearance

As you are likely aware, ACFO has been studying its options following the dismissal of our previous pay equity complaint last year. We have always believed that the FI Group has suffered wage discrimination due to its female predominance and while our case was dismissed the underlying numbers spoke to the existence of a pay gap attributable to pay inequity.

Earlier this year we received an opinion from the Hay Group, a leading expert in pay equity that is often retained by the employer in such cases, who confirmed this for us. The entire FI Group now faces a wage gap based on inequitable treatment when compared to male predominant groups performing work of equal value.

With that opinion in hand, we opted to file a new pay equity complaint on behalf of the FI Group in the federal public service. This complaint was filed under the transitional provisions outlined in the Budget Implementation Act of 2009.

Around the same time, Sheri Benson, an NDP MP and the party’s labour critic, tabled a motion in the House of Commons calling for the government to address pay equity issues in the federal sector. The motion was adopted by the House and a special committee was struck to make recommendations on replacing the flawed pay equity legislation proposed in 2009 with legislation modeled on the 2004 Pay Equity Task Force’s report – a report that ACFO supports.

ACFO has been working behind the scenes with members of this committee and we’ve secured an appearance before the committee to make our own recommendations on April 18. ACFO Executive Vice-President Dany Richard and Labour Relations Advisor Stephanie Rochon will be appearing on behalf of ACFO and the FI Community to make recommendations for creating a truly fair pay equity regime in the federal public sector.

So for now our work on this important file will continue in two tracks. On the one hand, we will proceed with the complaint we’ve filed in an attempt to finally address the wage and systemic issues facing the FI Group in terms of classification and compensation. On the other, we’ll work with MPs from all parties to help craft a fairer, more permanent solution to pay equity at the federal level.

We will keep the FI Community updated as events warrant. For more information on the Special Committee on Pay Equity, including for links to listen to ACFO’s testimony on April 18, please see http://www.parl.gc.ca/Committees/en/ESPE.

For more information please contact Scott Chamberlain (schamberlain@acfo-acaf.com).

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