Thursday, July 26, 2018

Doing something about pay equity

New Zealand has an unjust and unjustifiable gender pay gap. Despite legislating for equal pay as far back as 1972, discrimination has persisted. Now, the government has committed to stamping it out in the public service:

The public service has two-and-a-half years to end pay discrimination against women, and to make flexi working hours the norm, the government announced today.

Women's Minister Julie Anne Genter and State Services Minister Chris Hipkins said they were taking action to end the existing 12.5 percent pay gap between men and women in the public service.

They have set a target to close the pay gap in two-thirds of core state services by the end of next year, and the rest by 2020.

There are also targets for eliminating gender bias in starting salaries, and for equality in the top tiers of management. All of which is good, and will hopefully force the private sector to follow suit or see talented women work elsewhere. At the same time, we should all be asking: why did this take 45 years?