The Government has confirmed companies with over 250 employees will have to publish their gender pay gap - and is taking action to ensure girls study STEM subjects at school, too
The Minister for Women and Equalities Nicky Morgan has confirmed that the Government is pressing ahead with legislation to force companies with over 250 employees to publish their gender pay gap – and will take action to make sure that thousands more girls are studying STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) subjects at school.
‘In recent years we’ve seen the best employers make ground breaking strides in tackling gender inequality,’ says Morgan. ‘But the job won’t be complete until we see the talents of women and men recognised equally and fairly in every workplace. That’s why I am announcing a raft of measures to support women in their careers from the classroom to the boardroom, leaving nowhere for gender inequality to hide.’
‘At the same time I’m calling on women across Britain to use their position as employees and consumers to demand more from businesses, ensuring their talents are given the recognition and reward they deserve.’
Caroline Dineage, Minister for Women, Equalities and Family Justice, told Marie Claire exclusively that the new legislation will be easily accessible, and could affect up to 34 per cent of the population.
‘Today’s announcement is an important step in achieving greater gender parity, for pay and representation, at all levels within big businesses,’ adds David Sproul, Senior Partner and Chief Executive at Deloitte UK, who published their figures last year. ‘Being able to access information about a company’s gender pay gap will enable people to make better informed decision about potential employers, while companies will also be able to consider gender pay when selecting suppliers. We reported our gender pay gap last year and, looking across our organisation as a whole, our gender pay gap stands at 17.8% (around 1.3% below the national figure).’
But this is just one small step towards equality. ‘Simply reporting the gap is not enough,’ explains Sam Smethers, Chief Executive of the Fawcett Society. ‘We’ve got to get serious about addressing the causes. A commitment to increase women taking STEM subjects at A-Level is welcome. But to reap the benefits of investing in girls’ education we need to make sure the workplaces they go into are compatible with balancing work and care and actively promote female talent.’
‘Fawcett is calling for all jobs to be advertised as flexible unless there is good business reason not to; a dedicated period of paid leave for dads that they can afford to take out to care and action to make sure the best women are properly rewarded and promoted.’
And we’ll second that.