Budget 2018: Sharing parental leave for a stronger middle class

News release

March 5, 2018    Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island       Employment and Social Development Canada

Canadian women and men deserve to be equal partners in society and equal participants in the economy. When we have gender equality both at home and at work, families thrive and our economy flourishes.

That is why today, the Honourable Scott Brison, President of the Treasury Board, was in Charlottetown to highlight the Government of Canada’s new Employment Insurance (EI) parental sharing benefit to encourage both parents in two-parent families—including adoptive and same-sex couples—to share equally in the work of raising their kids. Soon, two-parent families who share parental leave could receive an additional five weeks of leave, making it easier for women to return to work sooner, if they choose.

This is part of the Government of Canada’s commitment to finally closing the gender wage gap in our country. This Government recognizes that part of this gap is due to the fact that caregiving duties disproportionately fall to women.

While a shift to more equal parenting is an important tool to reduce the gender wage gap, it must also be part of a broader array of policy tools, such as the Government’s investments in early learning and child care, better training and financing for learning, proactive pay equity, pay transparency, supporting women to enter highly-paid skilled trades and STEM positions, and the continued appointment of skilled, talented women to leadership positions.

When women have equal opportunities to succeed they can be powerful agents of change—driving strong economic growth and improving the quality of life for their families and their communities. 

Quotes

“It has been proven time and time again around the world that inequality, and particularly inequality of opportunity, is bad for society and bad for the economy. If half of your of population is being held back, if half of your population isn’t being given the chance to fully contribute, that’s not only a human rights issue, it’s a social and economic issue.”
– The Honourable Scott Brison, President of the Treasury Board

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Contacts

Emily Harris
Communications Advisor
Office of the Honourable Patty Hajdu, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour
emily.harris@hrsdc-rhdcc.gc.ca
819-654-5611

Media Relations Office
Employment and Social Development Canada
819-994-5559
media@hrsdc-rhdcc.gc.ca
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