Minister Leitch releases progress report for women on boards

Harper Government taking strong action to support women's economic prosperity

OTTAWA, June 26, 2015 /CNW/ - Today, the Honourable Dr. K. Kellie Leitch, Canada's Minister of Labour and Minister of Status of Women, highlighted progress made since the federal Advisory Council released its report, Good for Business: A Plan to Promote More Women on Canadian Boards, in June 2014. It included the goal of seeing women hold 30% of all public and private sector board positions by 2019.

Over the past year, Minister Leitch has engaged in dialogue with Canadian business leaders on increasing the participation of women at the highest levels of corporate life, and found considerable support. She also pointed out that, at the federal level, women represented approximately 36% of Governor-in-Council (GIC) appointments in 2014. This is a significant increase over 2012, when women held less than 30% of GIC positions.

To increase this momentum, Economic Action Plan 2015 proposed to modernize Canada's corporate governance framework by proposing a "comply or explain" amendment to the Canada Business Corporation Act in order to promote gender diversity on the boards of public companies.

Quick Facts

  • In December 2014, Canadian securities regulators implemented a mandatory "comply or explain" rule, now requiring businesses to report annually on the gender composition of their boards of directors. These amendments were adopted by securities regulatory authorities in Nunavut, Northwest Territories, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland and Labrador.
  • As of October 2014, nearly 20.8% of corporate board positions at Canadian stock index companies are held by women in Canada.
    (Catalyst, October 2014)
  • Since 2007, the Government of Canada has invested over $162 million through Status of Women Canada in support of more than 780 community-based projects across Canada. This includes over $14 million for projects that support women's entrepreneurship across Canada, and over $18 million for projects that support women in skilled professional trades and technical professions.


"I am proud of the progress we've made in advancing more women into leadership roles in both the public and corporate sectors and across the Canadian economy. We know that when women succeed, Canada succeeds. That is why we will continue finding innovative ways to support the economic success of women while building on this great momentum."

The Honourable Dr. K. Kellie Leitch, P.C., O.Ont., M.P.
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, Director of Communications, 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

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