Pay Equity Lawyers

Many employees do not receive equal compensation for performing the same tasks under the same conditions as their coworkers. For the workers facing this situation, it can be very challenging to demand equal compensation in their workplace, particularly if they lack familiarity with the laws and regulations governing pay equity and have no prior experience with legal procedures. This article explores pay equity in Ontario. We will analyze the concept of pay equity, pay equity laws, the principle “Equal Pay for Equal Work,” and explain how the professionals at Roberts & Obradovic can help with equity pay- related legal issues.  

Achieving Pay Equity: Your Rights and Legal Recourse

Pay equity is defined by the Canadian Human Rights Commission as “equal pay for work of equal value.” In Ontario, pay equity legislation is based upon the principle that employers must provide their employees with the same compensation for the same amount of work, without discriminating against employees based on gender or race. Underlying the principle of pay equity are both human rights and social justice concerns. Simply put, everyone’s work should be valued equally, no matter their race, gender or sexual orientation. Two employees performing substantially the same type of work in the same workplace, requiring substantially the same skills, efforts and responsibilities, and performing work under similar conditions, should be equally compensated.   

In Ontario, failure to comply with pay equity laws is a form of discrimination. 

Understanding Pay Equity Laws

There are several of laws and regulations in Ontario designed to protect and promote pay equity, including: 

1. Pay Equity Act 

Ontario’s Pay Equity Act outlines the principles, procedures, and requirements to achieve pay equity in the workplace. One of its main provisions requires to employers to assess the compensation and the worth of work performed by both female and male job workers within their organization. At the same time, it establishes a procedure for analyzing pay equity within an organization. This analysis consists of evaluating jobs based on such things as qualification requirements, level of effort, degree of responsibility and working conditions, to determine whether equitable remuneration is offered. 

2. Ontario Employment Standards Act 

Ontario’s Employment Standards Act sets minimum standards for employment in Ontario, including remuneration and payment of wages. The Act prohibits employers to provide one employee with a lower rate of pay than another employee of the opposite sex when they perform essentially the same type of job at the same workplace, require similar levels of skill, effort, and responsibility, and work under similar conditions. This principle is often known as “equal pay for equal work.” Employers are prohibited from reducing employees’ pay rates to achieve this equality. 

“Pay Equity” versus “Equal Pay for Equal Work” 

The “Equal Pay for Work of Equal Value” principle is different from “Pay Equity.” While both principles aim to achieve pay equity, pay equity focuses on addressing systemic disparities in compensation for various demographic groups, while equal pay for equal work focuses on ensuring that people with the same job functions or responsibilities are paid the same regardless of who they are. These principles are often interconnected and can be applied simultaneously to promote fair and equitable pay practices in organizations. 

Taking Action for Fair Compensation

Employers can take proactive steps aligned with the pay equity principles, including: 

  1. Assessing the organization’s pay structure, comparing jobs based on skills, effort, responsibility and conditions.  
  2. Identifying wage disparities and implementing necessary corrections, such as wage adjustments and fairer hiring and promotion practices. 
  3. Ensuring access to information on salary structure, compensation criteria and promotion opportunities to promote understanding and fairness. 
  4. Training employees and managers on equal pay principles, laws and best practices to raise awareness and promote equality. 
  5. Continually monitoring the evolution of pay equity legislation in Ontario and complying with it. 

Pay Equity Legal Advice: How Roberts & Obradovic Can Help You?

If you need help with a pay equity issue in Ontario, it is advisable to seek legal resources and specialized support to obtain the knowledge, advice, and representation required to deal adequately with the situation.  

Here at Roberts & Obradovic we are committed to providing you with legal advice and representation. Our lawyers are experienced in pay equity and employment rights issues. We regularly counsel clients on pay-equity related legal issues and represent institutions and individuals in pay equity disputes or litigation.  

Seeking Pay Equity and Fair Treatment at Your Workplace? Whether you’re an employer aiming to ensure pay equity within your organization or an employee who believes in their right to fair compensation, our team is here to provide expert guidance. Connect with us at (647) 724-5179 or complete our contact form to schedule a complimentary consultation with our experienced pay equity advocates. Our commitment lies in understanding the nuances of your situation and providing comprehensive support at every stage of the process.