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Government applauds gender equality in business

News Release

Government applauds gender equality in business

Stephanie McLean, Minister of Status of Women, has issued the following statement in response to a decision by the Alberta Securities Commission:

“I am so pleased that the Alberta Securities Commission adopted new ‘disclose or explain’ rules that can help increase the number of Alberta women in corporate leadership roles.

“In 2015, our government made history by appointing Canada’s first gender-balanced cabinet. Today, we applaud the Alberta Securities Commission for advancing our goal to achieve women’s equality in Alberta.

“We believe it’s time to achieve gender balance at all decision-making tables in our province – including the boardroom table.

It’s time Alberta’s corporate leadership looked more like the customers they serve – and that means appointing more qualified women.

“Women make up nearly half of Alberta’s workforce, yet in 2016, women hold only 11 per cent of board positions on Alberta-based, TSX-listed companies.

“Appointing more women is not only fair, it makes good business sense. Research shows companies with women in leadership roles are more profitable, more innovative and better at retaining top talent.

“Investors have welcomed this disclosure because companies with more women on their boards and in executive positions generate a better return on investments.

“The Alberta Securities Commission decision brings us closer to achieving gender balance in Alberta’s corporate leadership and we welcome this important step.”

Background

  • The Alberta Securities Commission adopted a rule change that, effective Dec. 31, 2016, requires Alberta-based, non-venture issuers, including Toronto Stock Exchange-listed companies, to disclose the number of women on their boards and in executive management and to describe any related policies or targets.
  • New rules will require non-venture issuers to disclose each year:
  • the number and percentage of women on an issuer’s board of directors and in executive officer positions
  • director term limits or other mechanisms of board renewal
  • policies relating to identifying and nominating women as directors
  • consideration of the representation of women in the director identification and nomination process and in executive officer appointments
  • targets for women on boards and in executive officer positions
  • If a non-venture issuer has not adopted the mechanisms, policies or targets outlined above or does not consider the representation of women, the issuer must explain its reasons.
  • The Alberta government currently takes gender balance into account as part of its decision-making in board appointments to provincial agencies, boards and commissions.
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