UN Sustainable Development Goal 5

Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment

Mothers, daughters, sisters, nieces, aunts, grandmothers, great-grandmothers and other women across Canada make diverse and significant contributions to family life, which has an impact beyond the family home into workplaces, communities and society as a whole.

Gender equality is a fundamental human right, and equality rights have been enshrined in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Nevertheless, women and girls in Canada continue to perform a disproportionate share of unpaid work in the family home; they are underrepresented in the labour market; and they experience higher rates of family violence and lower average incomes than men. All of this, research has shown, can impact economic growth and social development.

Ensuring that all women and girls across Canada have equal access to education, health care and decent work is critical to building a caring and compassionate society with a robust and prosperous economy, in an inclusive and vibrant culture, in a safe and sustainable environment.

Key facts and statistics:

  • In 2018, women in Canada earned an estimated $0.87 for every dollar earned by men, largely as a result of wage inequality between women and men within occupations.
  • In 2018, the employment rate of women in Canada in their prime child-bearing years (25 to 54 years) was 79%, compared with 86% of men in the same age group.
  • In 2015, 90% of surveyed women in Canada reported doing unpaid housework that day (compared with 76% of men), and spending an average 3.1 hours on these tasks (2.5 hours among men).
  • In 2015, 62% of women aged 25 to 54 in Canada had a child under age 13 at home, and/or provided care to family members and friends, compared with 57% of men.

Source: Statistics Canada

Vanier Institute resources related to SDG 5:

Page last updated July 31, 2019