Brescia Faculty Association closes gender wage gap and New/Mode was there to help

Historic gains made by Brescia Faculty Association towards achieving pay equity, a case study




Letters submitted


Social media reach increase


   new supporters

The Campaign in a Nutshell

Brescia Faculty Association (BFA), with support from Ontario Confederation of University Faculty Associations (OCUFA), led a focused and effective letter campaign to close the gender wage gap at Brescia University College. Using New/Mode's One-Click E-Mail Your Representative tool, BFA received almost 600 letters of support in just one week urging the Brescia Principal and Board Chair to take steps to pay its professors a fair and equal salary at Canada's only women's university.

As a result, they were able to secure an agreement bringing Brescia predominantly female faculty workloads and salaries in line with those of their peer institutions.


Issue & Opportunity

As Canada’s only women’s university, Brescia is uniquely placed to lead by example in minimizing discriminatory pay practices. Striking 72% of Brescia's faculty is female, the highest proportion in the country, but they earn the second lowest salaries in the province according to the Ontario Council of Academic Vice-Presidents 2014-15 results.

A financial analysis of Brescia University College revealed the institution has had a surplus over the past five years, making it clear a fair pay is within the institution's budget. Now is the time for Brescia to put their employees first, commit to equal pay for equal work and take a lead in closing the gender wage gap.

“For an institution whose mission is to prepare graduates to lead with wisdom, justice and compassion in a changing world, it really needs to set a better example for its students.” 

-- Melissa Jean
President, Brescia Faculty Association

Solution & the Win

Ontario Confederation of University Faculty Associations supported BFA in launching a digital engagement campaign using our powerful one-click E-Mail Your Representative tool, sending out a clear call to action: “Closing the gender wage gap: Sign a Letter to the Brescia Principal and Board Chair.”

Within less than a month, and with support of a strong social media campaign, the Brescia Principal and Board Chair received close to 600 submissions and got a clear message on where the community stands on this issue.

Thanks to the pressure from BFA’s supporters and allies, a strike was avoided as the Brescia Faculty Association membership ratified the new fair agreement on October 4, 2016 and the Brescia Board of Trustees ratified the agreement on October 12, 2016. 


“We achieved this historic gain because of the support and encouragement you demonstrated by sending a letter to the Principal and Board Chair. We could not have made these improvements in working conditions for our majority female faculty complement or taken these great strides towards closing the gender wage gap in Ontario without your support. [...] It made all the difference.” 

-- Melissa Jean
President, Brescia Faculty Association


New/Mode is proud to contribute to this momentous step forward at Brescia. There is still a lot more work to be done, not only in pay equality - we would be happy to discuss what we can do to help you with your next campaign. Check out our powerful engagement tools here:

 Founded in 1999, the Brescia Faculty Association (BFA) is a certified union representing all 36 of Brescia’s full-time professors. For more information, please visit

Founded in 1964, OCUFA represents 17,000 faculty and academic librarians in 28 faculty associations across Ontario. For more information, please visit the OCUFA website at