Friday, November 11, 2005

Latest numbers on the pay gap

Women are now paid 17.2% less than men for work of the same value. "Unless radical new action is taken, another generation of women can expect to suffer the injustice of unequal pay" says the Equal Opportunities Commission. Chances of radical new action being taken? Very low.


Iceman said...

"The GMB union said urgent action was needed to close the "unacceptable" pay gap between men and women. Its general secretary, Paul Kenny, said: "There is a culture in British industry where job segregation is seen as normal, but this has to be brought to an end."

There are many factors at work here:

-Many companies tend to give their male and female employees different employment tracks, with men tending to get tracks with more potential for high earnings and upward mobility. Men tend to be placed in departments like management or finance or sales while women tend to be placed in departments like human resources or public relations.

-As you've written about elsewhere, women who leave the workforce temporarily to have children suffer significant discrimination upon their return, and many are not able to find jobs that are comparable to the ones they left. Many employers discriminate against all young women, thinking that it's not worthwhile to really invest in them because they aren't serious about a career and are just killing time while they look for a husband or before they have babies.

-Unless management makes a conscious effort to be even-handed, they will tend to hire, promote, and mentor people who are similar to them. This goes beyond gender and also extends to race.

Cruella said...

Yeah I think there's a lot of unconscious prejudice going on. People don't necessarily mean to discriminate but they have a backlog of cultural influences in their heads that mean when they hear the word "senior executive" they picture a guy.

Butterfly Jones said...

How about not being able to find a job when you have two degrees, and a few years work experience in the field your looking for one in - journalism. Yes, I know it's competitive but how come people with less experience of paid and unpaid work (people I studied with) all now have jobs. My pension is definitely going to be peanuts.
Thanks for the 'support' at tonights debate.
('Wimpy Girl' as I shall forever be known)

Cruella said...

Thats fab duckie, thanks very much. My email is

Hiya wimpy girl, nice to meet you last night, I'm going to post about it in a sec! I think our generation know in advance we're going to have to rely on ourselves for pensions.