Overview of the 2021 Employment Equity Act Report

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The Employment Equity Act Annual Report 2021 provides the latest information on the representation of designated groups in federally regulated private-sector workplaces. This overview features key highlights and initiatives related to employment equity.

Designated groups in the federally-regulated private sector


The federally regulated private-sector workforce includes 735,790 employees. Designated groups members are represented as follows:

Table 1: Representation, availability and attainment rate (by percentage)
Designated groups Representation rate Overall Canadian labour market availability* Attainment rate
Women 39.1** 48.2 81.0**
Aboriginal peoples 2.4*** 4.0 59.9***
Persons with disabilities 3.9***  9.1 43.0***
Members of visible minorities 26.0*** 21.3 122.1***
Table 2: Highest and lowest representation rate (by percentage)
Designated groups Highest Lowest
Women 55.4 in banking* 28.3 in transportation*
Aboriginal peoples 4.1 in 'other'** 1.4 in banking**
Persons with disabilities 5.8 in banking** 2.2 in 'other'***
Members of visible minorities 38.5 in banking** 16.6 in 'other'**
Table 3: Shares of hires, promotions and terminations (by percentage)
Designated groups Hires Promotions Terminations
Women 32.7* 45.0* 34.6***
Aboriginal peoples 2.4*** 2.1** 2.5***
Persons with disabilities 2.0* 3.9** 3.3**
Members of visible minorities 24.9* 33.9** 23.0*


The permanent full-time workforce includes 239,503 women and 402,289 men.

Table 4: Distribution of workers in permanent full-time positions who earned a salary (by percentage)
Designated groups Under $50,000
Under $50,000
Between $50,000 and $99,999
Between $50,000 and $99,999
$100,000 and over
$100,000 and over
Women 25.1 17.6 56.7 55.8 18.2 26.6
Aboriginal peoples 32.1 20.7 55.5 56.5 12.5 22.8
Persons with disabilities 25.9 18.3 57.9 57.3 16.2 24.4
Members of visible minorities 25.9 19.7 55.9 55.9 18.1 24.4

Key initiatives related to employment equity

Workplace Opportunities: Removing Barriers to Equity

The Workplace Opportunities: Removing Barriers to Equity program provides $3 million in annual funding for projects aimed at reducing barriers faced by members of designated groups in federally regulated private-sector workplaces.

Employment Equity Act Review

The Employment Equity Act Review Task Force will advise the Minister of Labour on how to modernize the Act and its supporting programs.

Pay gap reporting

Pay gap data by designated groups will be available online in 2022 to 2023.

For more information, visit the Employment Equity Act: Annual Report 2021.

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