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Canada’s Tech Worker Pay Gap

January, 2019


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Ryerson University’s Brookfield Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship released a 56-page report analyzing Canadians in technology jobs (the “Report”). The Report focuses on the technology industry’s diversity and demographic using census data collected in 2016. The most glaring statistic from the Report, and certainly the most discussed in the media, is the wage gap between males with a Bachelor’s degree or higher, and other minorities in the industry at the same educational level.


In particular, female tech employees earned an average of $75,500 in 2016, while males averaged around $95,100. This nearly $20,000 gap also manifested between male and female employees across visible minority groups–women of all racial backgrounds received lower compensation than men. The only exception to this was Chinese women who were paid almost as much as their male Chinese counterparts.


Other groups are also disadvantaged in pay. Visible minority and Indigenous employees are paid significantly less than those who do not identify as such. Interestingly, however, even within Indigenous and visible minority groups, a stark trend in pay inequality appears. For instance, Inuit tech workers made an average of $45,000, while Metis earned approximately $71,700. Regardless of gender, however, the Report indicated that minority groups received a lower salary than non-minority groups, regardless of their gender.


The Report does not analyze the causes of the gap. However, Sean Mullin, the Brookfield Institute’s executive director stated that men are typically drawn to more technical, higher paying jobs. Women, he noted, are also less likely to enter fields that lead to technical positions, such as science, technology, engineering, and math, and, when they do, they face additional cultural barriers.

 

Author: Hassan Rasmi

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