FREDERICTON (GNB) – The provincial government is taking a major step forward with implementing pay equity in government.

“This reflects our commitment to improve pay equity across all parts of government,” said Finance Minister Cathy Rogers. “I am pleased that we are making a significant stride forward in fulfilling that commitment.”

Rogers spoke on behalf of Treasury Board President Roger Melanson.

The provincial government has approved the implementation of pay equity adjustments for one of its largest groups of employees. The group, represented by local 2745 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees, includes more than 3,000 workers in the education sector, of which the vast majority is women. These workers include educational assistants, administrative assistants, school library workers and intervention workers.

“Staff from the provincial government, in particular the compensation and classification branch of the Treasury Board, are to be commended for carrying out a detailed, non-discriminatory job evaluation exercise and applying a statistically sound methodology to determine the inequities, while working in collaboration with the union,” said Rogers.

The commitment will equate to $3.5 million a year over the next 10 years.

“All private-sector employers are encouraged to examine the wage gap within their organizations and assess whether systemic discrimination and/or pay inequity exists,” said Rogers. “We will continue to explore opportunities to involve the private sector in achieving this goal.”