28 August 2019
Today is Equal Pay Day, which brings up a mixture of emotions. While the pay gap is dropping, now at 14 per cent, it is still far too high and a new KMPG report suggests the single biggest factor in driving a pay wedge between men and women is rising gender discrimination.
Equal Pay Day marks the 59 additional days from the end of the previous financial year that women must work, on average, to earn the same amount as men earnt that year.
Across Australia, the gender pay gap is the equivalent of $445 million a week or $23 billion a year, according to the KPMG report. This is costing individuals, families and the Australian economy, with women working full-time earning on average $241.50 less each week. According to KPMG, if we could halve the gender pay gap, we could increase economic growth by $60 billion over the next 20 years.
This discrimination harms women’s careers, their financial stability and their long-term financial sustainability, with women retiring with around 40 per cent less superannuation than men.
The gender pay gap matters because it measures the extent of the barriers women face in the workforce. We are working to break those barriers through our programs, including our She Leads leadership program for women, including female-identifying and non-binary people. The goal of the program is to equip the next generation of women leaders, from all sectors and industries, with the skills and confidence they need to reach their leadership potential.
Reflecting on this day, our CEO Francis Crimmins said “I am proud that all staff at YWCA Canberra are remunerated according to our EBA. This is because when wages are set through EBAs, wages and conditions of employees are adhered to strictly, which results in the consistent application of pay.”