August 25, 2016 at 11:07 am #4710etilleyKeymaster
The sentiment is perfect; the implementation is Socially Irresponsible.
Politicians love Gender Inequality because – who does not like women right? In Canada, it’s like saying we like our hair or our arm; where is the downside? I agree that Gender Inequality should be correct as much as any father who raised four girls would. The challenge with so many Canadian Governments these past 30 years, however, is that we have a very poor track-record for building positive social programs that help society really.
Our nation’s exports are down 50% and imports are up 100% since 2000; Education is more expensive than ever; housing and rent bubbles are rampant and up to 75% of after-tax incomes in Vancouver and Toronto; wealth distribution is a big problem – we needed incomes, and prolonged lower interest rates have hurt the affordability of housing; Unemployment/ Underemployment (both actual 20% and reported 8%) – to name just a few social problems in Canada.
“Transparency” was another similar marketing buzzword that was laughably attempted on government websites this year; a very great failure so far – and a discussion for another article. The marketing folks found better voter-response to “Gender Inequality” – and so here we are discussing it today and every day.
I think that most would agree that Gender Inequality becomes a big problem whenever it shames women who want to raise their own children at home; when it loses family pensions of $1.2 million to $1.8 million as 20-year working-dads are replaced in a serpentine, socially-irresponsible effort by major businesses to by-pass pensions; or whenever it forces families into a dual-income trap.
And of course, as with most Canadian political marketing plays, our Canadian governments have no support for the displaced men overlooked in this discussion either – no guaranteed income programs, no jobs, and no safety nets. Remember that unlike most news reports from Ottawa’s political engine, this article is a discussion of reality. When I say that “Canada has No Safety-Nets”, this is because the stipend that they do offer, are perhaps 1/7th the actual Cost of Living – and to protect their statistics, Safety-net administrators are clearly told to work to the letter.
A good friend paid into Unemployment Insurance for twenty-five years and because he never imagined that he would not find a job after being laid off by a major financial company; he, like many proud working Canadians, submitted an application two weeks past the 12-month limit – and was denied benefits. He is not an unusual case. Homelessness, the total loss of all possessions, will surely follow unless a job can be secured – because there is no working safety-net here in Canada; and no other sources of income. We do have under-employment, work that does not match Cost of Living (COL); jobs in retail, services, etc. Minimum wage roles will not afford a car, nor rent in many real estate bubble centers. Other countries will not hire us because they are protecting their own citizens – as they should.
A mom with two kids will get support and housing – and rightly so – but a man? There must be a job for him; there always has been – right? But here we must revisit reality once again; the number of 50-year old Canadian men who can now tell the story of 300 resumes failing to secure an income higher that Cost of Living for the past two years has reached terrifying percentages. Why else would we see so many people desperately flipping houses to make an income? The housing bubble created prevents young families from affording basic housing and also rentals at this point.
We desperately need guaranteed incomes at Cost of Living rates – in support of Gender Inequality and – every other Government vote-grab out there. Failing to provide guaranteed incomes now costs Canada $60 billion in Export Wealth annually – see that discussion here.
At the same time, Canada remains the only G7 country who permits engineering work and jobs to be offshored without protection – all of our Crown Corporations and Banks avert both tax and local employees, to the conservative tune of billions of dollars annually. Add it up yourself, how many men are laid off in Canada with 20-years toward their pensions? Estimates can be 50% to 80% of non-government workers. Now multiply that number by $1.2 to $1.8 million per pension – per family.
Foreign investment in real estate and foreign ownership of business means jobs are of lower seniority with less decision-making power, lower quality and in lower numbers as well. Automation is a very good thing but it is also shrinking the number of jobs – and our incomes need protected during this change – or our families are impacted desperately. Divorce rates are at 50% to 70% in Canada, with further pension dissolution, and this promotes poverty and homelessness far more than “Gender inequality” ever will.
And then there is an honest discussion of skills that no-polite Canadian likes to hover over. Is a stay at home family caregiver going to have the same project and people-leadership experience as a full-time dedicated working parent? Even if all other considerations were equal, experience matters in most non-routine and non-sales-related professions. Should best-qualified for the job no longer apply then? A rhetorical question – because logic has indeed left the building.
Mistakes in implementing Gender Equality – like insisting on equal numbers of women to men in the workplace – comes at a time when “real” unemployment rates are 20% and the root problems creating a growing social crisis, social contract, are not recognized and not addressed. I would hate to guess what real poverty has been created already by the dismissal of 50% to 80% of our male, now unpensioned, workforce.
For developing countries, the Gender Inequality protections that Canadians enjoy today already, are a vital step needed to ensure that women share the basic human rights of education and personal respect that can never be overlooked.
Here within a developed nation, however, Gender Inequality can never be misused to distract voters from an irresponsible government in Canada. The new kid on the block is as guilty as the last four PMs just the same. Whenever you hear Gender Inequality, Transparency, etc. – fight back for solutions to actual issues of Guaranteed Incomes & Wealth Distribution, Housing Reforms, Offshore Protections, and a pervasive Canadian Socially Responsibility – for a very positive change.
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