CALGARY, June 23, 2014 /CNW Telbec/ - The Honourable Dr. K. Kellie Leitch, Minister of Labour and Minister of Status of Women, today spoke about the importance of increasing the representation of women on corporate boards across the country. Speaking at the Calgary Petroleum Club, the Minister presented evidence, particularly by the Conference Board of Canada, that shows increasing the number of women leaders on boards of directors can enhance corporate performance.
The Conference Board report outlines how companies in a rapidly changing global economy need to sustain a competitive edge. Increasing the representation of women on public and private boards ensures a diversity of talent, skills, and experience. The benefits of having more women in corporate board positions include improved board effectiveness, stronger financial performance, the ability to attract and retain diverse talent, enhanced client insight, and stronger performance on non-financial indicators.
The Minister added that increasing the number of female directors on corporate boards is about setting targets and goals that we can aspire to as a country, not about quotas. By creating leadership opportunities for women in corporate Canada, the performance of Canadian companies in the global economy will be strengthened.
- Women represent nearly half the Canadian workforce, yet only 15.9% of corporate board positions at FP 500 companies are held by women in Canada today. At the federal level, women hold 31% of all Governor-In-Council appointments.
- The Government of Canada has been promoting the increased representation of Canadian women on corporate boards as part of a commitment made in the Economic Action Plan 2012. This commitment included creation of an Advisory Council of business leaders to collaborate in this effort.
- Status of Women Canada encourages women and girls to participate in leadership and decision-making roles in the private and public sectors. The Agency has provided funding for projects designed to increase women's presence on corporate boards.
"Our Government believes in increasing opportunities for women throughout Canada's economy, from skilled trades to corporate boards. That's why we are playing a leadership role and promoting the business case for increasing the number of women serving on corporate boards across the country. It simply makes good business sense for Canadian women, and for Canada's economy.
The Honourable Dr. K. Kellie Leitch
Minister of Labour and Minister of Status of Women
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SOURCE: Status of Women Canada
For further information: For media inquiries only:Andrew McGrath, Press Secretary, Office of the Hon. Dr. K. Kellie Leitch, P.C., O. Ont., M.P., Minister of Labour and Minister of Status of Women, Tel: 819-953-5646; For all other inquiries:Nanci-Jean Waugh, Director General, Communications and Public Affairs, Status of Women Canada, Tel: 819-420-6810