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This is a call for support from members of the Canadian Museums Association (CMA) who plan to attend the Annual General Meeting in Toronto on Tuesday 16 April 2019 commencing at 4:15 p.m. If you are concerned about the significant inequalities in the amounts women & men are paid for doing the same work, please consider the following resolution that could be proposed at the Toronto meeting if we act in the next couple of weeks.

Those who wish to see the commitments CMA has made to addressing member concerns can read a full summary in the next post on this blog outlining a resolution that currently is before the CMA Resolutions Committee for a decision to place it on the AGM agenda.

In the meantime, a slightly revised resolution from the one proposed with full justifications in the 22 February 2019 blog post Advancing Museum Gender Pay Equity at CMA 2019 AGM is presented below. A related encouragement was posted on 16 October 2018 in Action! Required to Advance Museum Gender Pay Equity .

Museum practitioners who support directing the CMA Board to begin addressing museum gender pay inequity are invited to consider the draft resolution below & step forward to move or second such a motion in order to place it before the CMA Resolution Committee for a decision on its addition to the AGM meeting agenda.

DRAFT II Resolution on Gender Equality for CMA 2019 AGM

[mover and/or seconder are still required before it can be submitted to the CMA Resolutions Committee]

WHEREAS: solid evidence abounds from Statistics Canada and elsewhere that women employees across job categories in all sectors earn only $0.87 for every dollar earned by men doing the same work (Moyser 2017; Cornish 2016: 6, 16 passim; cf. United Nations Human Rights Committee 2015);

AND WHEREAS: it has been well-documented for many years that women employees in museums experience similar gender discrimination in pay levels that range from 69 cents to an average 77 cents (Treviño et al. 2016: 9, 10) for every dollar earned by men doing the same museum jobs (cf. Steel 2018; Baldwin et al. 2018, American Alliance of Museums 2017; Baldwin et al. 2016) & that this gender pay inequity is exacerbated significantly by race (Dawson 2018; Baldwin et al. 2016);

AND WHEREAS: CMA’s strategic planning process for 2019 going forward is still under development at this time;


This annual general meeting of the Canadian Museums Association direct the Board of Directors to proceed expeditiously to consult the literature on pay equity in museums, interested CMA members, any other relevant partners and resources available, and to report to the 2020 CMA AGM on potential ways and means for museums to implement gender pay equity in our field as one strategy for museums to show ways & means of addressing this world-wide problem of gender pay inequity in light of the challenge presented by the book Museum Activism by Janes & Sandell (2019).


The CMA include working toward gender pay equity in museums as one of the Long-Term Goals in its 2019-2024 Strategic Plan.

References Cited:

American Alliance of Museums. 2017. “News Release: American Alliance of Museums Partners with 11 Regional and State Museum Associations to Produce 2017 Salary Survey: Comprehensive Study Analyzes 52 Museum Positions on National, Local Levels,” 20 June. Washington: American Alliance of Museums https://www.aam-us.org/2017/06/20/american-alliance-of-museums-partners-with-11-regional-and-state-museum-associations-to-produce-2017-salary-survey/  (accessed 22 February 2019).

Baldwin, Joan H. 2018. “Museum Women: Why Are We Tolerating This?” Leadership Matters blog posted: October 15, 2018 https://leadershipmatters1213.wordpress.com/2018/10/15/museum-women-why-are-we-tolerating-this/ (accessed 22 February 2019).

Baldwin, Joan H. et al. 2016. “A Call for Gender Equality in the Museum Workplace.” Gender Equality in Museums Movement https://www.genderequitymuseums.com/call-to-action (accessed 22 February 2019).

Cornish, Mary. 2016. Every Step You Take: Ontario’s Gender Pay Gap Ladder. Toronto: Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives Ontario Office. https://www.policyalternatives.ca/publications/reports/every-step-you-take (accessed 10 July 2018).

Edmonson, Amy C. and Detert, James R. 2005. “The Role of Speaking Up in Work-Life Balancing.” In Work and Life Integration: Organisational, Cultural, and Individual Perspectives. Ellen Ernst Kossek and Susan J. Lambert eds. Mahwak, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Dawson, Kathryn. 2018. “Playing the Game: Understanding the Gender Gap in Art Museum Directorships.” Museum Scholar 2(1) http://articles.themuseumscholar.org/vol2no1dawson (accessed 20 March 2019).

Janes, Robert R. & Sandell, Richard. 2019. Museum Activism. London & New York: Routledge.

Moyser, Melissa. 2016. Women and Paid Work. Ottawa: Statistics Canada https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/pub/89-503-x/2015001/article/14694-eng.htm (accessed 22 February 2019).

Posen, David. 2013. Is Work Killing You? A Doctor’s Prescription for Treating Workplace Stress. Toronto: House of Anansi Press Inc.

Steel, Patrick. 2018. “Museum gap favours men despite more women in the top quartile.” News posted 11.04.2018 [11 Apr. or 4 Nov.?] Museums Association (UK) https://www.museumsassociation.org/museums-journal/news/11042018-pay-gap-larger-than-national-average-at-six-museum-and-heritage-organisations (accessed 22 February 2019).

Treviño, Veronica; Voss, Zannie Giraud; Anagnos, Christine; & Wade, Allison D. 2016. The Ongoing Gender Gap in Art Museum Directorships. New York: Association of Art Museum Directors. https://staging.aamd.org/sites/default/files/document/The%20Gender%20Gap%20in%20Art%20Museum%20Directorships_0.pdf (accessed 13 March 2019).

United Nations Human Rights Committee. 2015. “Concluding observations on the sixth periodic report of Canada” http://docstore.ohchr.org/SelfServices/FilesHandler.ashx?enc=6QkG1d%2fPPRiCAqhKb7yhskswUHe1nBHTSwwEsgdxQHJBoKwgsS0jmHCTV%2fFsa7OKzz9yna94OOqLeAavwpMzCD5oTanJ2C2rbU%2f0kxdos%2bXCyn4OFm3xDYg3CouE4uXS (accessed 22 February 2019).

If readers think this equalisation of pay for women & men doing the same jobs in our industry needs doing, there is no good reason to wait any longer before taking action. Surely, this problem never can be solved by saying or doing nothing about it. Indeed, speaking up is the first step to solving the problem (cf. Posen 2013: 313; Edmonson and Detert 2005: 422). We need to speak up now to support the above resolution at the CMA 2019 AGM in Toronto.

Women have already waited nearly half a century since this insufferable discrimination was first identified in the museum field.

It is time to take action!