PSA national secretaries vote for equal pay on Suffrage Day
19 Sep 2017
Today, PSA national secretaries Erin Polaczuk and Glenn Barclay are advance voting for the 2017 election alongside their daughters, with equal pay and fairness in mind on the 124th anniversary of women’s suffrage in New Zealand.
“I’m voting for a New Zealand that truly values women for the work we do, recognising that we’re worth 100% and deserve equal pay,” says Erin Polaczuk, PSA national secretary.
“It’s hard to explain the issue to my daughter Summer – she’s only nine years old and can’t fathom that a man and a woman can do exactly the same work and yet the woman somehow earns less.”
“There’s no answer I can give but to say that the world isn’t always fair to women and we still have a long way to go.”
“The first step is opposing the Government’s so-called ‘pay equity’ legislation, which will essentially close the door on current and future equal pay claims by placing onerous requirements on claimants and limiting the scope for them to choose comparator roles in other industries.”
The PSA has been active throughout the 2017 election campaign in advocating for the interests of its 64,000+ members and lobbying political parties to put pay equity on the agenda.
After negotiating the equal pay settlement for 55,000 care and support workers alongside sister unions E tū and the New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO), the PSA is seeking pay equity for community mental health and addiction support workers, who were omitted from the original settlement but perform very similar work for significantly less.
“It’s strange to think that 124 years after women were granted the vote, they still aren’t being paid equally – both in terms of receiving equal pay with men in individual workplaces and in achieving overall pay equity for historically female-dominated professions that are undervalued,” says Glenn Barclay, PSA national secretary.
“For my daughter Sylvia, it’s one of the biggest issues this election, and I was proud to stand with her and cast our votes for a fairer New Zealand.”
Glenn and daughter Sylvia Barclay, 27, cast their advance votes this morning at the Asteron Centre in Wellington, and Erin Polaczuk will be casting hers at 3:30pm at the Wellington City Library, accompanied by her daughter, Summer, 9.