It’s 2017, women have had the vote for 99 years (and the full vote for 89) and almost 50 years since the Equal Pay Act which essentially prohibited any unfavourable treatment between men and women in terms of pay and conditions of employment and yet there is still, on average, there is a 22% pay gap between professional men and women in the U.K. This means that on an average 37.5hr working week women are effectively not paid for 1hr 39mins per day!
The gender pay gap differs across industries with some paying more to women than men, for example female midwives are paid 61.8% more than their male counterparts. However, this is quite rare, more often than not and across multiple industries including journalism, medicine, and financial institutions there is still a big significance between gender wages.
Furthermore, according to research by the Chartered Management Institute men are 40% more likely than women to be promoted in management roles. However, the Office for National Statistics found that on average men work more overtime than women, which could also account for the difference in promotions.
It seems that over the past few years the gender pay gap has had more attention in the media, greatly helped by Hollywood celebrities, Patricia Arquette famously addressed the issue in her Oscar speech and since then a troupe of actors have campaigned to end this gap, so why is it still there?
Don’t get me wrong, progress has been made. Now between the ages 22-29 there is very little difference between salaries, however between 50-59 men are paid on average 18% more so there is still a way to go until we close the gender pay gap.