Hennessy's Index: Working Women (2014 Research)

Trish Hennessy

31.5% – Percentage pay gap between men and women in Ontario in 2011 – the most recent year of data available – based on average annual earnings. That’s up from a 28% gender pay gap in 2010. (1)

68.5¢ – How much Ontario working women made in 2011 for every man’s dollar. That’s down from 72¢ in 2010. (2)

$200 – Increase in Ontario men’s average annual earnings between 2010 and 2011. They earned an average of $49,000 in 2011. (3)

$1,400 – Decrease in Ontario women’s average annual earnings between 2010 and 2011. They earned an average of $33,600 in 2011. (4)

2X – The number of Ontario women who stayed in the workforce after age 65 doubled between 2007 and 2013. At no time in the past decade have so many women age 65 and older been in the paid labour market. (5)

79 – The age to which women in Ontario would have to work in order to catch up to what men earn, on average, by the time they reach 65 years of age. (6)

18,000 – Number of additional jobs that young Ontario women lost compared to men between 2009 and 2013. (7)

38.5% – Percentage gender pay gap for Ontario women between the ages of 35 and 44 in 2011 – the gap is highest for this age group. (8)

58.3% – Percentage of minimum wage workers in Ontario who are women. Even at $11 an hour, the minimum wage still keeps a full-time, year-round employee working poor in Ontario. (9)

18.3% – Percentage of persons in Ontario low-income families where the woman was the main breadwinner in 2011, compared to 8.1% of male breadwinner low-income families. (10)

194x – Canada’s highest paid 100 CEOs made 194 times more than the average Canadian woman in 2012. (11)

28.2% – The union wage “premium” for working women in Ontario is 28.2%. That’s how much more a woman working in a unionized job makes compared to a woman who is non-unionized. On an hourly basis, that amounts to $6.43 an hour more for unionized women. That’s why unions can be a great equalizer. (12)

Trish Hennessy of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives has long been a fan of Harper’s Magazine’s one-page list of eye-popping statistics, Harper’s Index. Instead of wishing for a Canadian version to magically appear, she’s created her own – a monthly listing of numbers about Canada and its place in the world. Hennessy’s Index comes out on the first of each month and reminds us that a number is never just a number.


1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12: https://www.policyalternatives.ca/publications/reports/growing-concern

5: https://www.policyalternatives.ca/publications/reports/ontarios-gender-gap

6: https://www.policyalternatives.ca/newsroom/updates/growing-concern-ontarios-gender-pay-gap

11: https://www.policyalternatives.ca/publications/facts-infographics/infographic-all-days-work



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