A new study released today by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) determined that when it comes to best city for Canadian women to live in, Victoria, B.C. takes the prize. The study, which analyzed Canada's largest metropolitan regions, found that Victoria is the top city for women not only to live, but to thrive, based on a variety of socioeconomic factors.
The report was rightfully conducted by a woman, CCPA Senior Researcher Kate McInturff, and provides annual snapshots of discrepancies between women's and men's "access to economic and personal security, education, health, and positions of leadership in Canada."
Victoria was also the frontrunner of last year's study, so this city must be doing something right and has us thinking it might be time to move.
But the study isn't all about celebrations and pats on the back; it also calls out the very worst cities to be a woman in Canada and provides an overarching analysis of our nation's inclusivity and treatment of women.
Windsor, you are the study's biggest loser. For the second year in a row, this Ontario city has come in last place based on its notable gap between women and men's access to a variety of factors for personal success, and not based on the economic success of the city itself. This final point the senior researcher makes very clear in a statement to Global News, "[The study is] not looking for which city is the wealthiest or the poorest but rather within a given city, do men and women have equal access to the things that are available in that city."
So congratulations you Victorian ladies! You officially live in the best city in Canada for women. However, the study's more general and overarching findings might put a damper on your celebrations or have the rest of us double-thinking a move to your beautiful city.
The study's findings very clearly noted that despite Victoria's superiority in comparison to other large Canadian cities, there has been an increased wage gap for the city in recent years. And although we know progress isn't always straightforward, this warning suggests that we as a nation still have a lot of work to do, something that the study's researchers clearly specify, stating "that despite a government celebrated internationally for ambitious gender-based policy and budget analyses, the country has stalled in closing gender gaps."
Ending on a positive note, the study seems hopeful for our country's future. “Our prime minister is setting a feminist agenda for his government. That means federal departments are starting to ask the right questions about how their policies and programs impact men and women differently,” says McInturff.
Other interesting tidbits of the study include:
Canada's largest cities, Vancouver, Toronto, ranked 5th and 10th respectively, while Montreal dropped from 6th last year to 15th this year!
Edmonton is in 18th place and has one of the largest wage caps in the country.
Hamilton moved up the ladder dramatically, climbing from 13th to 3rd place due to a narrower wage gap, women's access to leadership positions, and lower-than-national-average poverty rates.
And here is the complete list of rankings:
6. Québec City
7. St. John’s
16. St. Catharines-Niagara
Check out the entire study here.