New research on gender inequality reveals "appalling" bias against women

Tags:

Bias against female employees is overwhelmingly the reason New Zealand women are paid around 12 per cent less than their male counterparts, and the PSA says this needs urgent change.

Research released by the Ministry for Women today reveals that gender bias may account for up to 80 per cent of the gender pay gap.

Minister for Women Paula Bennett restated her commitment to closing the gap in the public sector, and has urged private sector employers to do the same.

"We welcome this research, as depressing as its findings are," PSA National Secretary Erin Polaczuk says.

"The evidence presented in the study is compelling and reinforces the PSA’s position that paying women less than men is unfair, illegal and hurts the whole economy.

"It’s appalling to see that although women are achieving higher than ever, there is still a bias in employers’ minds that makes them believe men are worth more."

Ms Polaczuk says that the onus is now on the government to redouble its efforts to address the gender pay gap - through legislation and other means.

"The government has a critical role to play as an employer, as many low-paid women in New Zealand are employed by or funded by the public sector.

"We want the Minister to show us the money - both to fund the wage increases that should be ordered, and adequately fund MBIE to implement and enforce labour standards.

"We also want a commitment to transparency around pay, and a better system of dividing paid and unpaid work.

"This government’s moving in the right direction, but a lot more needs to be done before New Zealand employers are truly paying women what they’re worth - 100%."