Destigmatizing parental leaves for fathers and non-birth parents and equalizing childcare responsibilities are necessary prerequisites for equity in the workplace
Launched in June 2022, the WCM Parental Leave Pledge provides a roadmap for organizations to follow to ensure that their parental leave policies and practices are inclusive and equitable to all those who use them, including fathers, non-birth parents, and birth parents.
The 23 signatories include: ATB Financial, Aviso Wealth, Bitbuy, Canaccord Genuity Corp., CPP Investments, Desjardins, DBRS Morningstar, Franklin Templeton, IG Wealth Management, Investment Planning Counsel, IMCO, KPMG, Laurentian Bank, Mackenzie Investments, Manulife, MUFG, Onex, OPTrust, PSP Investments, PwC, Raymond James, Scotiabank, and TMX Group.
“We are encouraged by the commitment of our sponsors who are taking action,” said Lara Zink, President & CEO, WCM, “but we still have a long way to go as an industry when it comes to destigmatizing parental leaves and equalizing childcare responsibilities. I challenge all leaders in the Canadian financial service sector to participate in and amplify this important initiative.”
The development of the Pledge is based on research conducted by WCM that looks at key aspects of inequity in the workforce, in relation to parental leave options. This includes leave duration, the barriers and biases that impact decision making, as well as the challenges faced when returning to work, including an adverse impact on long-term career development.
“I was initially concerned about facing any stigma in taking parental leave given the rigours of working in a competitive capital markets environment. However, in my experience the Canaccord Genuity team has been extremely supportive, flexible, and empathetic,” said Neil Bakshi, Equity Research Associate, Technology & Aerospace, and Parental Leave participant.
“The key to remember,” added Zink, “is that it’s not just about the creation and implementation of a flexible, inclusive parental leave policy, which is an important first step. It’s also about working to help evolve cultural norms and finding ways to foster a more supportive and inclusive work environment for everyone who chooses to take parental leave. Eliminating barriers supports parents of all genders – especially fathers and non-birth parents – to participate equally in their child’s care. It also enables organizations to better achieve their retention and diversity goals. It’s a win-win.”
WCM (Women in Capital Markets) works to accelerate equity, diversity and inclusion in the Canadian finance industry in partnership with major Canadian bank-owned dealers, independent and foreign dealers, asset managers, insurance firms, major pension plans, regulatory agencies, exchanges, and advisory firms. As a not-for-profit founded in 1995, our community has grown to 3,700 professional and student members, and our initiatives have impacted the careers of countless students and professionals across the country. To learn more, visit wcm.ca.
SOURCE Women in Capital Markets (WCM)
For further information: WCM Communications, Email: [email protected]