Gender Differences in Quits and Absenteeism in Canada - ARCHIVED

Articles and reports: 11F0019M2007296


Female workers are traditionally viewed as more likely to quit, to be absent and to take more days of absence than male workers, and this gender difference is widely used as an important explanation for the gender wage gap and other labour market differences between men and women. This study documents the gender differences in quits and absenteeism in Canada and attempts to assess whether the traditional view is still valid today.

The study found that Canadian women's quitting behaviour changed dramatically over the past two decades. While women's permanent quit rate was greater than that of men in the 1980s, it converged with men's permanent quit rate since the early 1990s, and today there does not seem to be any significant difference in quitting behaviour between Canadian men and women. In terms of absenteeism, it was found that, other things being equal, Canadian men and women were somewhat different in paid sick leave, not in other paid and unpaid leaves, and their difference in paid sick leave was not large: women took only one day more than men.

Taken together, these results imply that, in Canada, the current gender differences in quits and absenteeism are not significant factors to explain certain gender differences in labour market outcomes, such as the wage gap between men and women.

Issue Number: 2007296
Author(s): Zhang, Xuelin
FormatRelease dateMore information
PDFFebruary 23, 2007