The Alberta Union of Provincial Employee’s Pay and Social Equity Committee asks all members and the public to wear red in support of Equal Pay Day tomorrow, which raises awareness of the gender wage gap.

April 10 marks how far into a new calendar year women need to work to earn what their fellow male workers did the previous year.

“While the gender wage gap has shrunk across the globe, women still face barriers preventing them from earning equal pay for work of equal value to their male colleagues in many industries,” said AUPE vice-president Bonnie Gostola, chair of the union’s Pay and Social Equity Committee.

“Women’s labour should not be undervalued, and in Alberta, we are the only Canadian province without pay equity legislation or a policy framework on the issue. It is something AUPE has been fighting to achieve for decades,” Gostola said.

In November 2017, the Pay and Social Equity Committee had a petition tabled in the Alberta Legislature with 9,631 signatures, calling for a comprehensive pay equity act for Alberta that covers public and private sector employers; creates mandatory and proactive job evaluations; describes the minimum requirements for employers to identify and correct gender discrimination; and ensures wages in female dominated job classes are equal to those of comparable male dominated job classes based on skill, effort, responsibility, and working conditions.

“Wearing red tomorrow is an opportunity to draw attention to the need for equal pay for equal work for women, while celebrating the contributions women have made in our workplaces and our communities,” added Gostola.

AUPE members can download a wear red poster for their worksite bulletin boards here.

AUPE represents more than 93,000 members, province-wide. More than half are women working in government, boards and agencies, health care and education.