Tuesday 31 August marked Equal Pay Day in Australia, it denotes the 61 additional days that women have to work from the start of this financial year to earn the same amount as men. Equal Pay Day 2021 recognises the Australian gender pay gap, which is 14.2%, a rise of 0.8 percentage points over the last six months which shows that more work needs to be done. While this day is recognised in Australia specifically, UOWGE advocates the importance of pay equity across all of our global entities. Julie Stuart, Executive Director of People and Culture and Chair of UOWGE Group DEI Committee is “personally very committed to ensuring that our people have access to and enjoy the same rewards, resources and opportunities regardless of gender or any other characteristic. I will ensure that we analyse and monitor pay by gender annually and take action, where necessary."
The reasons for the gender pay gap are manifold and intertwined. The list below shows major causes of the pay gap:
- "women's work" is undervalued,
- women are missing in branches, like STEM subjects,
- women still face a glass ceiling when moving up the career ladder,
- women more often work part-time than men,
- women interrupt their careers more frequently due to family-related breaks,
- gender stereotypes prevail.
The Equal Pay Day does not only focusses on the wage gap, but is also a platform to discuss the causes behind the pay gap and to propose solutions on how to decrease the wage gap.
At UOWGE, all institutions across Australia, Dubai, Hong Kong and Malaysia are now part of our 2020-2022 Group Diversity Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Strategic Plan and each DEI Committee is focused on equality, managing diversity and reviewing pay equity. Executive and Senior Leadership teams are key partners in promoting and supporting this strategy, by recognising it is an important component in our workforce.