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Gender pay gap data shows discrimination alive and well

Media Release
Larissa Waters 16 Nov 2016

With the release of data on the gender pay gap today showing women are paid an average of nearly $27,000 less than men, the Australians Greens will continue to push for equal pay for work of equal value, and equal opportunity for women to succeed in all industries.

“The gender pay gap is sexist and must be closed. The worth of work done by women is the same as the worth of work done by men,” said Australian Greens Deputy Leader and spokesperson for women Senator Larissa Waters.

“Discrimination, unequal caring responsibilities and the undervaluing of feminised industries cause the gender pay gap, and the Greens are committed to changing those factors,” Senator Waters.

“Last month I introduced a bill to the federal Parliament to help close the pay gap by ending ‘pay gag clauses’ in employment contracts.

“Women tend to be paid less when gag clauses require salaries to be kept secret and colleagues not allowed to discuss their own pay.

“I have first-hand experience with being paid less as graduate lawyer than a male colleague in the same position – which I only found out when he inadvertently disclosed his higher salary, despite the pay gag

clauses that bound us both. Shining a light on discrimination will help end it.

“Women are still doing the majority of unpaid labour including the bulk of child rearing, putting them at a disadvantage in the workplace.

“To achieve equality in the workplace, we must encourage men to do more domestic and family labour – which requires workplaces to allow family-friendly practices for both mothers and fathers.

“All workplaces should be family friendly, including Parliaments, and last week the Greens initiated a successful rule change to make the Senate more family friendly by allowing Senators to briefly care for infants in the Chamber.

“The Greens stand with workers fighting to safeguard penalty rates ensuring the work of women in feminised industries like nursing, cannot further be undervalued.

“There is no place for gender discrimination in our society. We will continue to fight it in all its forms and ensure the work of women is valued to equal of that of men”.

The Greens bill to help fix the gender pay gap is here:  http://larissa-waters.greensmps.org.au/articles/fixing-gender-pay-gap-ending-pay-gag-clauses

Media contact: Lauren Gillin 0419 626 725

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