But 40 years after it was enshrined in law in the UK, women are still paid, on average, 17% less than men for full-time work and 39.9% less for part-time work.
Firstly, this is using the mean average and ONS says that we should all be using the median: less affected by a very few high earners way out in the distribution (yes, it is correct to use the median here as there is a lower bound, £0 pay, meaning that the mean will not be representative). And yes, ONS has told people like the Fawcett Society and Harry Harperson that they\’re wrong to keep using the mean.
Secondly it isn\’t true that women get 39.9% less for part time work than men get for part time work. Women actually get more for part time work than men get for part time work. That 39.9% number is calculated by comparing part time female pay with full time male pay….but all part timers get less than full timers (OK, on average of course) meaning that that is confusing the issue by adding two entirely different gaps together.
I thought we\’d complained often enough and loudly enough about this to get them to stop doing this. Obviously not, eh?
This is interesting though:
In a recent study by Friends Provident, the financial services company, 24% of women said they considered salary to be the most important factor at work, compared with 37% of men.
So women think that pay is not as important as men do, eh? So other things are more important….perhaps flexibility, working hour, the actual job itself? Which means that women are going to negotiate for (and yes, you do negotiate, even by just accepting the terms of the job or not) things other than pay….and thus going to end up with less pay and more of whatever else it is they think more important.
As Adam Smith pointed out, the total price paid for labour is going to be equal: how that price is divided between the various things that are paid for it may differ.