Gender Pay Gap Day: It's Getting Worse For Young Women

Gladys Abbott
November 11, 2017

It said that because the gap was widest for older women, it meant the United Kingdom was actually "going backwards" in its pay parity efforts.

Official figures show that the gender pay gap based on median hourly earnings for full-time employees fell to 9.1 per cent, from 9.4 per cent in 2016, but for full- and part-time workers the figure increased by 0.2 per cent to 18.4 per cent. These include discrimination, historical dominance of men in the most highly-paid positions, and undervaluing of work predominantly done by women.

The date has not changed for three years, showing the lack of progress, said the society.

The respondents said they thought the pay disparity was there despite the fact they were doing "the same work, similar work or work of equal value, an NUJ survey has found".

Evidence from the United States suggests that when you further account for such variables, the gender pay gap nearly completely disappears.

Sam Smethers, Chief Executive of The Fawcett Society said "The pay gap is widest for older women as it grows over our working lives but we are now seeing a widening of the pay gap for younger women too, which suggests we are going backwards and that is extremely worrying".

The pay gap for women in their 20s has grown from 1.1% in 2011 to 5.5% this year, it says. It is highest in London, at 20.7 per cent, followed by the South East region at 16.3 per cent.

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The average pay gap for full-time workers now stands at 14.1% - where it has been since 2015.

A recent study by the World Economic Forum revealed women will have to wait 217 years for the global pay gap to close - adding 47 years to the previous estimate. While Wales (8.3%) and Scotland (11.1%) fall below the United Kingdom average, London has the largest gap at 20.7%. Across the board, women are nearly twice as likely (1.8 times more likely) to receive the lowest pay - with 221,000 women earning less than the statutory minimum wage, 100,000 more women than men.

But even without a thorough breakdown of evidence, young women in the United Kingdom have every reason to believe that they will receive equal pay; the gender pay gap from women aged 22-39 is negligible. "This is a bigger issue than simply looking at the pay gap", she said. I'm pleased that some of our top companies are leading the way and have already reported.

"Employers with 250 staff or more need to review their pay systems and publish their gender pay gaps, with a clear action plan in place to close it", she said.

Holding up a piece of paper with an equals sign, Husain tweeted: "Closing the gender pay gap is about equality". By shining a light on where there are gaps, they can take action to address it‎.

The Government need to do much more to foster a flexible working culture in our workplaces - the default model needs to be all jobs are flexible working jobs unless there is a good business reason for them not to be.

The Fawcett Society also suggest mandatory gender pay reporting for larger employers, equal parental leave, and encuraging businesses to audit the nature as well as the pay of their work, to "make sure men and women are paid equal pay for work of equal value".

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