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January 28, 2020

Statement to Media from the ICD Regarding Statistics Canada Report on Lack of Female Board Representation

Statistics Canada Reports Majority of Canadian Boards Had No Female Members in 2016 and 2017;
Only 18.1% of Director Seats Were Held by Women in 2017

In response to today’s report issued by Statistics Canada detailing inadequate female representation on boards, the Institute of Corporate Directors issued the following statement:

Although we have seen incremental improvement in terms of gender diversity in Canada’s public company boards over the past five years, much more work needs to be done across the entire board landscape if Canada is going to better leverage all of the talent available to us.

In addition to gender representation, we also need to see greater diversity in terms of ethnicity, Indigenous status and other criteria. These shortcomings prompted the ICD and Osler Hoskin & Harcourt LLP to update our  complimentary board diversity policy template, which provides a tool to all boards to begin or further their process of diversification and helps companies meet their disclosure requirements under the Canada Business Corporations Act.

According to Rahul Bhardwaj, ICD President and CEO, “the ICD believes that diversity is the driver of innovation for Canada’s economy and, as such, we will continue to raise awareness and work with our director community to close existing gaps and to drive inclusion and competitiveness. Our more than 1,695 female members holding the ICD.D designation are ready, willing and able to serve on Canada’s boards.”

About the ICD

The Institute of Corporate Directors is a not-for-profit, member-based association representing Canadian directors and boards across the for-profit, not-for-profit, and Crown sectors. The ICD has more than 15,000 members and 11 Chapters across Canada and fosters the sharing of knowledge and wisdom through education, professional development programs and services, and thought leadership. ICD members across all sectors of the economy oversee well in excess of $1 trillion in market capitalization and institutions that impact the lives of virtually every Canadian.

Media Contacts

Annie Smith
Director, Communications and Public Affairs

T: 416-593-3359
M: 416-768-7711

Prasanthi Vasanthakumar
Manager, Communications

T: 416-593-3344

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