TORONTO, Oct. 3, 2013 /CNW/ - Jennifer Reynolds, President of Women in
Capital Markets (WCM), today released a statement strongly supporting
the Ontario Securities Commission's (OSC) consultation paper 58-401's
"comply or explain" approach on disclosure requirements regarding women
on boards and senior management. She and the WCM Board also recommend
additional disclosure requirements and policies to address the lack of
progress in increasing gender diversity in senior leadership positions.
"Addressing the underrepresentation of women on boards and in senior
management in Canada is critical to the economic competitiveness of
this country and to the quality and effectiveness of Canada's corporate
governance and we are very supportive of the OSC's proposals. There has
been a serious lack of progress in increasing gender diversity on
boards and in senior management, so we welcome this more proactive
approach," said Jennifer Reynolds, President, WCM.
In their response to the OSC, WCM submitted four additional disclosure
recommendations for OSC consideration which they believe are necessary:
Companies (Canadian non-venture issuers) should disclose measurable
targets for gender diversity and the targets should be associated with
specific timeframes. Furthermore, boards and management should be held
accountable for the achievement of specific objectives with respect to
gender diversity, just as they are for other strategic operational
Progress on increasing the number of women on boards and in senior
management needs to be monitored by the OSC on an annual basis and if
significant improvements in the statistics are not made within three
years other options should be considered.
Companies need to address the low turnover rates on boards in order to
make room for new directors. Disclosure on policies and practices with
respect to tenure limits and board renewal are essential to increasing
the representation of women on boards in a reasonable timeframe.
Companies should disclose whether they have a policy for advancing the
representation of women in senior leadership and board roles. If they
do not have such a policy, those companies should disclosure why not
and what risks or opportunity costs are associated with that decision.
"Canada lags behind other countries that have made significant progress
in increasing the representation of women. We commend the OSC's
proposals in the Consultation Paper and for initiating these important
changes to Canadian corporate governance," said Jennifer Reynolds.
WCM is a non-profit organization which advocates for the increased
representation and advancement of women into senior leadership roles in
the Canadian capital markets industry. WCM's membership is over a 1000
members strong with women working in all segments of the capital
markets and includes many of the most senior female executives in
Canada's largest financial institutions. WCM.ca
SOURCE: Women in Capital Markets (WCM)
For further information:
Please use link below to access a complete copy of WCM's response:
WCM Response to OSC
WCM PR and Media Relations