The Fawcett Society Employers invited employers to take the Pay Gap Pledge after calculating that from November 9 women were effectively working for free until the end of the year when compared with the pay that men receive.
Using figures from the Annual Survey of Hours & Earnings produced by the Office of National Statistics the charity, which campaigns for women’s rights, said that the current pay gap for men and women working full-time is 14.2%. At the current rate of progress the Fawcett Society said it will take over 50 years to close the gap.
The government has completed a consultation on new regulations to require larger employers to publish gender pay information. These will apply to voluntary sector employers in England, Scotland and Wales with at least 250 employees.
Separately the House of Commons’ Women and Equalities Committee has just launched an enquiry into an inquiry to inform government strategy on reducing the gender pay gap, focusing on women aged over 40. The Committee wants to ensure that the planned government regulations will benefit women over 40 who it says are most affected by the pay gap between men and women.
The Fawcett Society wants employers to take action now to reduce the gender pay gap before the regulations – now being drawn up – come into force.
Meanwhile, Virgin Money Chief Executive, Jayne-Anne Gahdia began debating the first of her rec commendations to improve the representation of women in senior managerial roles in the financial services industry at a summit in London.
The summit, hosted by the Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Harriet Baldwin, in London heard that Gahdia’s government-appointed review believes that the remuneration package of a firm’s executive team should be dependent on gender balance.
The finance sector has a particularly poor record of employing women, particularly in senior roles. Writing on the review’s page of the Virgin Money website Gahdia also suggested that organisations should be required to measure, report and publish their progress on the advancement of women in senior positions in Financial Services and that a senior member of the executive team is accountable for developing the agenda, setting targets, measuring them and reporting on them publicly.
A complete set of recommendations for improving the gender balance in the financial sector are due to be published soon which will be consulted upon ahead of a final report ahead of the government’s budget in 2016.
Details of the Women and Equalities Select Committee Inquiry into women’s pay http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/women-and-equalities-committee/news-parliament-2015/gender-pay-gap-launch-15-16/
Details of Gahdia’s review can be found at: http://uk.virginmoney.com/virgin/women-in-finance/