Thursday, May 11, 2017

National: The sexist party

Women have been fighting for over a century for pay equity. Yesterday, Parliament had an opportunity to do something to advance that struggle, via Jan Logie's Equal Pay Amendment Bill. The bill would have implemented recommendations of the Human Rights Commission for greater information and transparency around gender and pay, allowing discrimination to be uncovered and corrected. Instead, National voted it down:

A private member's bill that would have provided greater evidence with which to fight gender pay discrimination in New Zealand was lost in Parliament tonight by 59 votes to 60.

Green MP Jan Logie, said the Equal Pay Amendment Bill had been supported by a large number of women and women's organisations.


But it was opposed by National, Act, and United Future on the grounds it would add greater compliance to businesses and that it could compromise privacy.

And there we have it: the fundamental right of women to equal pay has been shut down because it might slightly inconvenience (mostly old male) business owners. Its a telling illustration of National's priorities, and of how we'll never get any real progress on this issue voluntarily (remember: the huge pay equity settlement was forced by court action, and National fought it all the way).

National is the sexist party. If you want equality, vote for someone else.