Increasing the role of women in leadership is not just about equality for women. It is about strengthening the territory for the benefit of all Northwest Territories residents. The GNWT is working with its federal, provincial, territorial and non-government partners to identify opportunities for increasing the representation of women on private and public sector boards in the NWT, and in trades and industry throughout the NWT.
The Minister participates in meetings with the FTP Ministers responsible for Status of Women. Increasing the representation of women in leadership positions and women in trades and industry are priorities for the FPT Status of Women Forum. The Women on Boards Task Team has developed Draft Promising Practices for Promoting Gender Balance in Government Appointments in Canada , for Ministerial discussion. Many Canadian jurisdictions have enacted “comply or explain” regulation for private sector companies, but governments have not taken a similar approach for government appointments. The draft promising practices are intended to assist FPT governments in their efforts to identify qualified and gender diverse candidates for all government appointments.
This initiative can assist the GNWT in developing its own unique gender diversity strategies for woman on boards. The Women in Trades and Industry Task Team, with the support of the Canadian Apprenticeship Forum, developed a business case document to promote the increased representation of women within the skilled trades and technical professions titled The Competitive Advantage: A Business Case for Hiring Women in the Skilled Trades and Technical. The business case provides high-level evidence-based information on strategies and best practices to increase the representation of women within growing sectors of the economy.
The GNWT can benefit from the best practices in this document to develop its own initiatives to increase the participation of women in trades and industry. The GNWT created a public board appointments website which will assist in the participation of women wanting to serve on public boards. Federal, Territorial and Provincial ministers have also agreed to apply an Aboriginal lens to their work on increasing the representation of women on boards.