PEI

P.E.I. squeaks out B- on women's equality

Bonus points pushed Prince Edward Island into a B- mark on a women's equality report card, but the government struggled in the area of women in decision-making roles.

Grade improves from C in 2 previous report cards

The report card notes the province has the lowest percentage of women in cabinet among the provinces. (Province of P.E.I.)

Bonus points pushed Prince Edward Island into a B- mark on a women's equality report card, but the government struggled in the area of women in decision-making roles.

The report card was released by the Advisory Council on the Status of Women Wednesday morning.

"A B– reflects strong results on some priorities women have identified and stalled progress on others," the report card says.

This is the sixth report from the council. They have been issued sporadically since 2008.

It is an improvement over C grades in 2013 and 2015, the last two report cards. The province required a score of 70 per cent for a B-, and reached 70.3 per cent.

Full bonus points

The report focused on 10 particular initiatives from the province, giving a bonus point to the province for each. Those initiatives include:

  • The women's wellness centre in Summerside.
  • Support for grandparents and caregivers.
  • Support for P.E.I. families in the National Inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.
  • Three new family law programs to support children.
  • Support for LGBT issues across government.

While the government received strong marks for these initiatives, its progress on issues previously identified by the council wasn't rated so well — it was given 26.8 out of a possible 45 marks, or 60 per cent.

In government-led initiatives, the province got 33.5 out of 45, or 74 per cent.

Room for improvement

The government received its lowest mark in Women's Economic Status.

"There has not been a major review of the Employment Standards Act since 2006, and the work world has changed a great deal in that time," the report card said.

Social assistance rates are not increasing fast enough, it said, and support for people trying to get off social assistance needs to improve.

The report also noted there was little or no progress in most areas of having women in decision-making roles.

In particular, the report noted P.E.I. had the lowest percentage of women in cabinet of any Canadian province.

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