An analysis commissioned by the association and performed by the Canadian Human Rights Commission’s former director of pay equity, Paul Durber, concluded that midwives are paid only 52 per cent of what they should be earning – 91 per cent of the rates paid to their traditionally male counterparts, family practitioners at community health centres. He based his conclusion about relative pay scale on skills, efforts, responsibilities and working conditions.
“Essentially, midwives are being asked to work for free from July to December,” Ms. Berinstein said.
I’ve been meaning to post about this for a while now. The Association of Ontario Midwives challenged the Ontario government in November on pay and gender discrimination. Ontario is always at the forefront of midwifery care and policy. It was the first province to regulate midwifery and to establish a strategic education platform that is now shared amongst three major universities and mirrored in other institutions around the country.
The way I see it, midwifery in Ontario is moving to the next step, which involves better support for the graduated midwives; the working professionals in the community. While I think midwifery care in BC is trendy, in Ontario they have a real strategy that will extend itself to BC and other provinces. Trendy is a good place to start though, because conversation and awareness drives action. Kudos to Ontario for being brave enough to take action first.
A couple background reads on what the Association of Ontario Midwives is doing:
(And just for fun, a video about fairness using monkeys. Because. Who doesn’t like monkeys and a guy with a German accent?)