Gender Diversity Key Issue

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    In recent years, the Canadian business community’s desire for a range of perspectives on boards of directors and in the executive ranks has made board and management diversity a key corporate governance issue for Canadian companies and policymakers, says Mercer. As demonstrated in part by a recent Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) initiative on gender diversity on boards and in executive officer positions, companies are facing mounting pressure to show real progress in increasing diversity and ensuring that it is sustainable. Mercer says Canadian companies already disclose the number (and percentage) of women on boards of directors. However, the proposal to require disclosure of the number and percentage of women in executive officer positions, including subsidiaries, is new. It would likely facilitate accountability on gender diversity and may shed light on the effectiveness of a company’s gender diversity policy.