Fact Sheet: Compensation of Women and Men in the Public Service

Women now represent about 55% of the overall federal public service. In addition, in the last ten years, women have accessed more top jobs in the public service. Indeed, the share of women among high earners (e.g., annual base salary greater than $100,000 for those working on a full-time, full-year basis) in the public service increased from 33% in 2006-2007 to 43% in 2016-2017. Moreover, the representation of women in a number of professional groups, with higher average salaries, is on the rise:

  • 47% of senior and executive ranks, compared to 39% in 2006-2007
  • 57% of the economics and social science groups, compared to 54% in 2006-2007 (including the ES and SI groups)
  • 57% of the biological sciences groups, compared to 47% in 2006-2007
  • 58% of the law groups compared to 52% in 2006-2007
  • 48% of the commerce officer groups, compared to 42% in 2006-2007.

The overall wage gap between men and women in the public service, calculated as the difference between the average hourly wage of all men and all women regardless of group or level, has decreased from 12.6% in 2006-2007 to 8.8% in 2016-2017. Today, women in the federal public service earn an average wage or salary of $70,259 ($35.91/hour), about 91% of the $77,042 ($39.38/hour) that men earn (fiscal 2016-2017). For men and women under 35, this gap narrows to 2.7%, due in part to the greater similarities in characteristics that impact wages for this younger population.

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