Government of Canada breaks new ground by publishing pay gap data for federally regulated private sector employers

8 Apr 2024

On February 2, 2024, the Government of Canada launched Equi’Vision, a new website that provides easily comparable data on representation rates and  pay gaps  of the four designated groups under Canada’s Employment Equity Act:

  • women
  • Indigenous peoples
  • persons with disabilities
  • members of visible minorities

The Act requires employers to:

  • collect workforce information
  • conduct workforce analysis to identify gaps
  • review the employment systems, policies and practices to identify barriers
  • prepare and implement a plan to remove barriers and address gaps
  • report workforce data as well as measures, results, and consultations

With pay gap reporting, new barriers might be uncovered and addressed.

Over the years, the results included in the Employment Equity Act: Annual Reports demonstrate that although progress has been made for the 4 designated groups, there is still a need to address existing gaps in representation. This is the case in certain occupational categories, and in some regions of Canada. Further, despite narrowing educational and work experience gaps, pay gaps persist among workers in Canada.

In 2018, the Government of Canada announced pay gap reporting as a pay transparency measure for federally regulated private-sector employers subject to the Employment Equity Act. The goal was to reduce pay gaps affecting the four employment equity groups designated under the Act and to help shift business culture and expectations toward greater equality.

Legislative and regulatory amendments were made to enable pay gap reporting. These initiatives were consulted upon with stakeholders and benefitted from that input. In 2022, private sector employers subject to the Act began reporting new salary data to enable the calculation of aggregated pay gap percentages. These obligations apply to approximately 560 organizations, employing over 809,000 workers. 

Upon its launch, Equi’Vision published employer pay gap information for each of four designated employment equity groups.  The information, which is published by organization and by occupational group, includes:

  • Mean and median hourly pay gaps
  • Mean and median bonus pay gaps
  • Mean and median overtime pay gaps
  • Mean and median overtime hours gaps
  • Proportion of employees receiving bonus pay
  • Proportion of employees receiving overtime pay

Equi’Vision can be used as a diagnostic tool for employment equity. Using representation rates and pay gap data to identify employment barriers for the 4 designated groups allows employers to:

  • implement measures in their workplace to remove the barriers, and
  • reduce their representation or pay gaps

Canada is proud to be a global leader in making this level of information available publicly.  The pay gaps and representation published on Equi’Vision go beyond gender pay gaps, and include gaps experienced by the four designated groups. Publishing employer information provides a better understanding of the unique workplace issues and experiences of employees. It also supports employers in addressing barriers that may underlie their gaps. 

Raising awareness of pay gaps and representation gaps in federally regulated workplaces gives employers the opportunity to show leadership in reducing them.

 You can explore Canada’s Equi’Vision website here: Equi'Vision: An Employment Equity Tool - ( .