Change starts with you.

On November 26, 2020, The Ontario Society of Professional Engineers (OSPE) launched a new campaign focused on advancing diversity and inclusion in the engineering profession. We publicly committed to a four-point action plan that will address systematic bias in engineering culture, training and its licensure process. 

We invited all engineers, Ontario’s engineering regulator – Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO), Engineers Canada, the Engineering Societies’ Student Council of Ontario, the Association of Consulting Engineering Companies – Ontario (formerly Consulting Engineers Ontario), government officials, engineering school deans, vested community stakeholder groups, to join us in this endeavor.

To date, we have seen much support from the community. Our objective is to unite the engineering community on an issue that affects everyone. By tweeting your support through you are joining your peers in demanding real change. Engineering is lagging other professions in this regard and it is time to get ahead of the issue to ensure a prosperous future for the entire profession. 

engineering for change

The Facts: Systemic Discrimination in Engineering

OSPE has been listening to the entire engineering community – students, young professionals, engineering managers and retirees – and have heard a loud demand for change.

Our research has found serious issues of systemic bias against communities of diverse and underrepresented groups, including women, that is discouraging some of the best talent from remaining in engineering-based roles.

Did you know?

  • One-in-three women currently get paid less than their male counterparts in the engineering industry
  • One-in-four women experience harassment, discrimination or bullying at work within the engineering industry
  • Forty-five percent of women reported feeling undervalued or disrespected in the workplace, when compared to 20% of their male counterparts
  • Forty-four percent of men compared to 18% of women claimed claim to having never felt barriers to their workplace advancement.

Enough is Enough: Our Four-Point Plan for Action   

In response to these findings, OSPE has made a vital commitment to acknowledging and uprooting all sources of bias in the system that selects, educates and registers professional engineers.

“Starting right now, OSPE is dedicating itself to unifying the voices of Ontario’s engineering community. Enough is enough and we won’t stop until we see meaningful change and movement towards a diverse and inclusive profession that is vibrant and ready to serve Ontario without bias.” says OSPE CEO Sandro Peruzza.

Our four-point plan is designed to kick-start real change for the future of the whole engineering community of Ontario:

  1. Taking concrete actions and reaffirming that diversity and inclusion remain one of our core values,
  2. Offering regular diversity and inclusion training to any members of the engineering community who seek it,
  3. Launching a new featured Diversity and Inclusion Champion Award in 2021 to honour OSPE members who are making real system change,” and
  4. Committing to convene a summit with all Ontario engineering leaders in 2021 to develop an industry-wide action plan.

Join us today. Change starts with you.


This Post Has 5 Comments

  1. Ajaz

    Seems a good and timely discussion. However, the title appears misleading. This discussion is about women only. There is huge discrimination against newcomers and highly skilled immigrants in Canada. Why not truly include diverse groups and under-represented communities within the discussion, so you can do more justice to your title and more completely inclusive, and stop discrimination against all.

    1. STAFF

      We apologize for misleading you with the title. Although this blog does speak mostly about the barriers that women have faced in engineering, know that the #EngineeringForChange campaign stands for the removal of bias against any marginalized group within engineering. You can read more about the campaign here:

    2. Paul Givens

      As it turns out, white people are under-represented in engineering. Who is perpetrating this “huge discrimination”? Who are you making this allegation against?

  2. Paul Givens

    The article does not say who is perpetrating this “systemic discrimination”, but the implication is that white skinned men are the evil people who are doing it. If discrimination is “systemic”, there is an implication that a majority of white skinned people are racist. A very nasty allegation is being made. We need to acknowledge this.

    According to Statistics Canada, the majority of engineers in Canada are visible minorities, so white people are actually under-represented. How does that fit with the narrative promoted in the article?

    1. STAFF

      Hi Paul, to imply that we’re targeting any specific group or that this campaign is inherently racist, is incorrect. If you go to our website you can see all of our claims there. Be sure to check out our Fact Sheet, which includes more background on our claims, including sources. I hope this will clear up any misunderstanding. Merry Christmas!

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