Diversity in the Senate – My latest in Policy Options
2017/02/16 Leave a comment
My latest, analyzing the diversity of Senators. Intro teaser below:
With the large number of Senate appointments made by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and a more independent role for individual senators, a look at the current level of diversity in the Upper Chamber is timely.
In essence, the Trudeau appointments have made the Senate more diverse in terms of gender, visible minorities, and Indigenous peoples and thus more representative of the people it serves.However, when viewed from the perspective of education and occupation, there is less diversity: more senators with higher degrees, and more senators with an activist background and less with a business background.
Given the increased independence of senators, the increased ethnic and gender diversity and decreased educational and occupational diversity may play a role in terms of how the Senate responds to legislation and plays its sober second thought role.
This analysis contrasts the various aspects of diversity between the 43 non-affiliated senators (33 form the Independent Senators Group, of whom 28 were appointed by Prime Minister Trudeau), and the 41 Conservative and 21 Liberal senators (December 2016).