Depressingly, it’s going to take over 50 years for the gender pay gap to close

According to a new report, women won’t see financial equality before 2069

Here’s a bit more depressing news for women – it’s going to take another 50 years before we all start earning the same as men.

According to a new report by financial consultancy firm Deloitte, the gender pay gap in the UK won’t close until 2069 – almost one hundred years since the 1970 Equal Pay Act was first implemented.

Yes, even though the pay gap is currently the lowest it’s ever been at 9.4% for full time workers, it’s still going to take another 99 years for it to close completely. Which means that it’s currently reducing at the absolutely huge rate of 2.5p a year – that’s just 0.35% of the current minimum wage. Pretty speedy, hey?

Putting it into context, Jemima Olchawski, head of policy and insight at the Fawcett Society, told The Guardian: ‘At the current rate of progress young women starting work today will have retired by the time we close the gender pay gap – none of us can afford to wait that long.’

PayGap

According to the report, those female graduates who are starting work today will earn 8% less than their male counterparts in all STEM subjects combined (i.e. science, technology, engineering and mathematics). And that’s a gulf that’s only set to widen over time unless we address it now.

So why is this still happening? Considering that women make up 50% of the population and it affects all of us, from your average female office worker to Hollywood stars?

According to the report, there are some factors which will affect the overall result, such as women being three times more likely to be in part-time work than men. Also having an impact is the time women take out of work for family reasons and the fact that they often apply for lesser paid jobs after returning from maternity leave.

But one of the main reasons is still discrimination: ‘There may also be unconscious discrimination at work and within organisations that affect decisions about jobs and pay.’ Too right there is. No wonder it’s making women depressed.

Let’s hope more companies make like Facebook and take a stand against the gender pay gap now.

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