On Equal Pay Day today, the Australian Greens are finalising a bill to introduce to Parliament in the next sitting period to end gag clauses in employment contracts that leave women earning less.
"We know the gender pay gap is worst where pay is kept secret," Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens Deputy Leader and spokesperson for women, said.
"In the private sector, it's common practice for contracts to include gag clauses that prevent workers from discussing their pay with one another.
"The gender pay gap is much smaller in the public sector at 12.2%, where workers are allowed to talk about their pay, compared 21.3 per cent in the private sector, where these gag clauses exist.
"My Bill would give workers the power to discuss their pay with their colleagues if they wish to, without fear of breaching the gag clauses often included in contracts.
"It should always be your choice whether to discuss your pay, and some people will still prefer to keep their pay private.
"This is one practical step we can take toward ending the gender pay gap, which is still at a whopping 17.9 per cent.
"There's much more work we need to do to achieve financial equality, including defeating the Abbott Government's attacks on paid parental leave," Senator Waters said.
More information on the Greens Bill here