Bob Jackson’s letter to the editor of the National Post

Bob Jackson wrote a letter to the editor of the National Post, in response to this column by John Robson. Read it below …

I was disappointed to see John Robson use another in a long line of flawed reports by the Fraser Institute as an excuse to launch an attack on public service workers.

Appropriate data may not be available – or of interest to – the Fraser Institute, however credible research using Statistics Canada’s National Household Survey clearly shows that, when comparing similar occupations, the difference in wages between the public and private sector are negligible.

Research also finds there is less wage discrimination for women, aboriginal people, and visible minorities in the public sector compared to the private sector, which helps evens out income inequality in Canada.

University educated aboriginal women make 44% less than their non-aboriginal peers in the private sector. In the public sector, this wage gap reduces to 14%. University educated women working for the private sector earn 27% less than men. Their wage gap in the public sector is 18%. University educated visible minority workers take home 20% less than their non-visible minority counterparts. In the public sector, their wage gap is 12%. Salaries are higher in the public sector for women and minority groups because they experience more discrimination in the private sector. The public sector is correcting these gaps and alleviating discriminatory practices.

Wages should reflect Canadian values and we should all be concerned about the negative social and economic impact of wage and income inequality in our country.

The Fraser Institute would do well to study ways Canadians can work towards a more equitable economy, instead of providing ammunition for columnists who advocate a race to the bottom.

A rising tide lifts all boats, public and private.


Bob Jackson
Public Service Alliance of Canada
Regional Executive Vice-President, BC