10 Summer Jobs Where There is a Gender Pay Gap
Landing that first summer job is an exciting rite of passage for many teenagers. Unfortunately, new research shows that teen girls aren't just receiving real-world experience and their first paycheques — they’re also getting firsthand experience with the gender wage gap and the importance of equal pay for women. According to a 2019 report from Girl Guides of Canada, girls receive on average $3.00 less per hour than boys at their summer jobs.
Here are 10 examples of where there's inequality between boys and girls at work.
BabysitterYou likely remember your first babysitting job in one of two ways: fondly or with dread.
Whether it was for your little brother or the neighbour's kids, caregiver is the first job for many teen girls. Unfortunately, it’s also the place where the wage gap widens the furthest. Girls who worked informally for family, friends or neighbours doing work such as babysitting earned a whopping $6.31 less per hour than boys.
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LandscaperNot only do girls receive lower wages than boys, they’re also less likely to be employed in particular jobs, mirroring their adult counterparts. Only nine per cent of girls were employed in maintenance, gardening or grounds-keeping, compared with 23 per cent of boys.
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Retail workerYou’d think that folding shirts at the mall would be accompanied by standardized rates of pay. Think again. According to Statistics Canada, females aged 15 to 24 make an average of $13.58 per hour in retail, while their male counterparts made $14.28. That $0.70 difference adds up to a lot of food court frozen yogurts.
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Camp counsellorGoing to camp isn’t just about singing songs, sitting around the campfire, or making out in the boathouse after all the kids are in bed — it’s also about saving for university. Fortunately, both genders are equally likely to be employed in recreational jobs during the summer months.
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CleanerSpending your summer scrubbing toilets probably isn't anyone's top choice, but hey — money is money, right? Except that girls get paid less to do it, starting from a very young age. According to a survey from BusyKid, an app that allows kids to track their allowance, the average boys makes $13.80 per week, while girls make just $6.71. Maybe it shouldn’t come as a surprise that research also shows women are asked to “housework” around the workplace more often than men.
Food and beverage serverAccording to Girl Guides of Canada, one in 10 girls aged 12 to 18 reported some form of sexual harassment or assault while working in the summer of 2018. So, what does this have to do with working in hospitality? While this behaviour can happen in any workplace, it’s particularly pervasive in the service industry. According to a 2014 report by Restaurant Opportunities Centers United, 90 per cent of restaurant workers have experience sexual harassment.
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Construction workerGendered construction tools are upsetting enough (who needs a pink hammer to get the job done?) but then we learned about the amount of money girls receive on job sites. Girls are much less likely to work in manufacturing or construction, and those that do earn almost $2 per hour less.
Administrative assistantWe’ll let the numbers speak for themselves. According to Statistics Canada, females aged 15 to 24 made $16.40 per hour in admin positions in 2018. Their male counterparts, however, pulled in $18.03 per hour.
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InternGirls, if you want to get that money and some substantive work experience, internships are the way to go. Contrary to popular belief, “internship” isn’t synonymous with “unpaid.” In fact, this is one gig where girls got paid the most, at an average of $17.52 per hour.
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Full-time jobsBy the time teenagers are ready to take on a full-time position during the summer months, the gender wage gap is massive. The proof? Boys make $18.01 per hour on average in these roles, while girls only make $15.26 per hour on average. It’s time for this to change. Girl Guides of Canada urges parents to talk with their daughters about pay and expectations.
“We can be intentional about developing girls’ skills and capacity for future employment and addressing the barriers they face at early ages,” the report says. “To do this, all of us — including parents and employers — have a critical role to play in ensuring that girls are empowered in the workplace.”
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