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Brilliant Western Woman Talks to Canadian Business Women's Club

Heritage Community Foundation, Albertasource.ca and The Famous Five Foundation
 
         

 

Newspaper report, "Brilliant Western Woman Talks to Canadian Business Women's Club" c. 1915.

"Business is not a matter of sex, but of capacity," Mrs. Murphy said, and added: "That work is yours for which you are best adapted—even if it is to sing bass!"

With regard to the "equal-pay fallacy", she said that although in their war work woman had equalled man in efficiency, she got 50 to 85 percent less wages. Her present wage scale doesn't depend so much on her efficiency as on her employer.

The speaker quoted from a Toronto paper an item telling of a girl receiving $11 a week in a bank where she was "required to dress so that at all times she shall appear what she is not."

"I don't care who they are who give a girl $44 a month," Mrs. Murphy said. "They are profiteering in her blood and in her life and in her soul."

"It used to be considered an awful thing to send girls into offices, where there were supposed to be wicked employers and other dangers. But we have found out a wonderful thing. We have found out that this is not so. The most dangerous profession for women today is domestic service. Statistics in the United States, and they are probably much the same in Canada, show that eighty percent of the women who have gone wrong were in domestic service."

Reprinted by permission of Women's Press.

 
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