After nearly 50 years of equal pay legislation, the UK's gender pay gap remains at a stubborn 17%.
While gender pay gap reporting was made mandatory in 2018, just publicising the significant gender pay gaps in UK companies hasn't forced them to take any concrete action to address gender pay inequality.
In particular, companies' gender pay gap reports almost always assume that they do not have an equal pay issue. This takes the form of blaming historical reasons that women have not been promoted into higher-grade work as the root cause of their gender pay gap, rather than interrogating their pay practices to ensure that women are receiving equal pay for work of equal value.
Our latest report, From Pin Money to Fat Cats, Pay Inequality in the FTSE 100, looks at these issues, as well as the issue of CEO pay ratios, and makes recommendations to effect change. With the 50th anniversary of the Equal Pay Act 1970 taking place in May 2020, it is time to turn up the heat on regulators, businesses and the government to finally address unequal pay.
What are we striving to achieve?
We are calling on shareholders, trade unions, ethical consumers, regulators and politicians to take immediate action to finally end unlawful gender pay inequality. We are calling for mandatory equal pay audits to be introduced for those companies with a significant gender pay gap.
Through the #EqualPay50 campaign, we are building a broad-based coalition that can effect lasting change, and undertaking campaigning activity to increase dissatisfaction for the UK's lack of progress in implementing the equal pay legislation among people of all genders.
This project has been funded by the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust.