business, invest, investment, pillars, 4, look for, quality product, quality systems

Canadian Employees Experience A Widened Wage Gap In Comparison To Their White Counterparts

A Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives report found Black workers benefitted the least from wage increases after the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to The Star, the wage gap between Black workers and their white counterparts in Canada grew after the pandemic. The report noted that Black men made 77 cents, and Black women made 68 cents for every dollar a white man made in 2022. Sheila Block, senior economist at the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives and co-author of the report, told The Star, “The pandemic recovery has been uneven, and while wages are up, racialized men and women and Black men and women still don’t make their fair share.” The report’s authors identified racialized workers as “non-Caucasian in race or non‑white in colour [sic],” according to The Star.

Moreover, Black workers are mostly concentrated in low-paying industries like food service, retail, etc. The study reports 60% of Black workers are employed in low-wage positions versus 48% of whites. Racialized workers make up 52% of lower-wage jobs.

The rate of unemployment in Canada by racial groups was also highlighted in the report. Blacks also fared worse in this category. The Star reported percentage points for unemployed Blacks decreased by 1.6, whereas white and racialized groups saw more significant improvements. The unemployment rate for racialized groups dropped by 2.9 and 2.1 for whites. Grace-Edward Galabuzi, a professor and co-author of the report, acknowledged the structural barriers impacting Black workers. Galabuzi told The Star, “There’s a structural problem here that starts with our education system.”

It’s been noted that Blacks in the U.S. experience similar struggles as their Canadian brothers and sisters. Black Enterprise recently reported Black women in the U.S. suffered the most from recent increases in unemployment.

In 2022, Black Enterprise reported that Black women’s wages in the restaurant industry were insufficient to meet their respective state minimum wages. The amount accounted for tips and gratuities.