When women have decent quality work, labour rights and earn a fair living, they can escape poverty and build prosperity.

Around the world, women perform the worst work, earn less than men, do more unpaid work, and bear the brunt of the widening wealth gap.

And in many countries, husbands have the right to stop their wives from taking jobs, which isolates them and creates economic dependency. Caring for the family and home has long been the responsibility of women. This unpaid work means women and girls have less time to attend school, participate in their communities and politics, perform paid work, and care for themselves

When a woman is paid a fair and living wage and works in safe and decent working conditions, she has the power to lift herself out of poverty. This benefits her family and her community, too.

To create a more just society, we must prioritize the poor instead of the rich and powerful. We must build an economy that works for women.

Why Women's Economic Justice?

Worldwide, women earn, on average, 23% less than men.
In 2018, 606 million women said unpaid care work prevented them from doing paid work. Only 41 million men said the same.
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One in 10 people survive on less than $1.90 a day. The majority of these people are women.

For me, poverty is not having the freedom to work and go out of the house, but this Oxfam project gave us the freedom to work and to earn my own income. I don’t feel like I am in poverty anymore.

Addise, age 26
Beekeeping Cooperative Secretary, Bahirdar, Ethiopia

The Pay Gap Is Real

It's not about her choice of work or that she doesn't ask for better pay. Check the facts. Women are being shortchanged.

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What is Oxfam Doing?

We advocate for Canada to become a global leader in transformative programming for women’s economic empowerment. Together with partners around the world, we develop skills and technical training programs, and we advocate for fair wages and decent working condition to help achieve economic justice. 


traditional ideas of gender roles which contribute to economic inequality. We involve men from the start, and engage community, education, and religious leaders to get their buy-in.


women’s voices throughout society: in labour and feminist movements, business, political participation, and leadership.


governments to make all work paid, equal and fair for women. We urge them to recognize and redistribute unpaid care work, in Canada and globally.

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Three steps you can take now


Join Us

Join Oxfam Canada's e-mail updates.



Start a fundraiser to support women's economic justice.

A woman with brown skin, brown eyes and dark hair is holding her young child and wearing a blue surgical mask and a red dress and headscarf.


Contribute to our fight for equality. Your support helps even the scales for women all around the world.

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