Call to water-down planned gender equality rules

by Stephanie Zillman29 Jan 2013

The Business Council of Australia (BCA) and the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) have expressed concern over the federal government’s proposed gender equality reporting requirements.

As it stands, from next year businesses with 100 or more employees must report on issues such as the number of men and women at different levels in their organisation. In addition, whether male and female workers are being paid equally will be closely monitored.

Submissions to the review board officially close today, and businesswoman Carol Schwartz has been appointed to lead government consultations with businesses over the new reporting requirements. Schwartz has said different sized businesses will put forward different views about how to avoid “onerous red tape”. She added that while workplaces with fewer than 100 employees will be exempt from the new reporting requirements, she expects to receive feedback on whether different rules should apply to remaining businesses based on their size.

Australian Industry Group CEO, Innes Willox, called for the measures to be simple, and said the data must also be easy to collect. “'The consultation process needs to account for the fact that a company with 100 employees will have very different information systems to a company with 10,000 employees,” Willox said.


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