19 Sep 2009

Petition seeks action on gender pay equity

6:30 pm on 19 September 2009

A petition calling on the Government to close the country's 12% gender wage gap has been presented to Parliament.

The petition, signed by more than 15,000 people, calls on the Government to reinstate pay equity investigations for large groups of female workers. It was timed for the week of Women's Suffrage Day, 19 September.

Labour MP Sue Moroney says the Government scrapped pay equity investigations for school support staff and social workers in March; two months later, it closed the Department of Labour's Pay and Employment Equity Unit. She says women are going backwards under this government.

Women's Affairs Minister Pansy Wong says however that addressing the gender pay gap is one of the ministry's three key priorities.

She says the ministry is looking at the differences in pay between male and female professionals after completion of tertiary studies, and at promoting flexible working hours.