ACTU laments employers' failure to close the gender pay gap

Union criticises government's 'complete lack of action'

ACTU laments employers' failure to close the gender pay gap

The Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) has recently expressed its concerns over a report that said six in ten large employers “made no progress” in closing the gender pay gap “over the year to March 2021.”

The ACTU has criticized the federal government for “resisting” to make changes in legislation and policy that could close the gap, including the Fair Work Act “to strengthen equal pay rights,” and wage increases for the lowest-paid frontline workers, “the majority of whom are women.”

In a media release, the ACTU cited a report from the Workplace Gender Equality Agency’s (WGEA) Gender Equality Scorecard, which found 85 per cent of employers are paying men more on average than women.

“This data is what we have come to expect under a government which refuses to lift a finger to close the gender pay gap,” ACTU President Michele O’Neil said in a statement.

“[The] government talks about its commitment to women, but when it comes to closing the gender pay gap, or acting on the recommendations of the [email protected] report, or even ensuring gender equity in its own ranks, there is a complete lack of action.”

“The legacy of this government is stagnation in the fight for pay equity. It is clear that the Morrison Government likes to talk about listening to women but in practice does nothing to improve their pay,” O’Neil added.

The WGEA collected data from private sector employers with over 100 employees, showing the gap in earnings between men and women sits at 22.8 per cent and is “barely moving.”

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