Women are ready, willing and able to lead the future of our economy. YW Calgary envisions an inclusive economy where there is an equitable shift in power and resources so people of all genders can: share decision in making within organizations, be compensated fairly and be treated respectfully.

On average women make 60% of what men make per year. On the basis of equitable pay alone, if women in Alberta received the same pay as men tax revenues would increase to $1 billion dollars.

There is no shortage of talent amongst women in Calgary – and there is a wealth of knowledge on how to move women forward as partners in the economic transformation of our world. So why are we still talking about this in 2020?

The truth is that progress in full and equal economic inclusion is just starting to happen – but we still need to work through some significant barriers. You know them well: attitudes about the value of women in the economy, harassment that is based in gender stereotypes and work place structures that are not inclusive of the needs of women.

Worldwide, unpaid labour costs the global economy $11 trillion – that’s more than the combined revenue of the 50 largest companies on the Fortune Global 500 list. Unpaid labour is largely done by women – think about the work of supporting a family member who is sick or taking care of young children.

Evidence makes a world of difference and clear outcomes are at the core of ensuring we achieve the goal of the equal inclusion of women in our economy. In celebration of International Women’s Day, at the 9th annual YWHISPER Fundraising Gala we heard from Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey who said, “Facts matter. Stories matter. Even in a time when everything feels stuck, bullies can be confronted and change can take hold.”

We are at the start of a major transformation towards a more equitable economy where women are meaningfully involved – and we need to keep the momentum going. This transformation promises trillions of dollars of economic benefit and a more inclusive world. Companies across all sectors are engaging in power-shifting work to re-balance pay, make workplaces more inclusive and balance representation at all levels of leadership.

Let’s respond to the collective call to action to keep the momentum going. We need powerful voices representing the gender spectrum to speak up and change the norms that perpetuate barriers for women in our economy. We need to focus on equity – shifting resources, and power so people from all genders have equal say, and pay in the workplace.

Want to learn more? Below are some essential readings: