There is by any measure a great deal of inequality in our world. And there are many hundreds of thousands of people globally working to reduce inequality.
For me the issue of pay inequality is something I’m very familiar with and something I work on everyday in my day job as a union official. Many countries have laws that require men and women are paid the same wage. These laws even exist in Australia but unfortunately these laws haven’t resulted in wage equality.
Some of the reasons for pay inequity and our worsening pay gap include:
- “women’s work” is undervalued
- in professions where women predominate, wages are generally lower than industry standards
- women more often work part time and in temporary jobs that have reduced hourly pay rates
- women interrupt their careers more frequently, e.g. after pregnancy
- women earn less than men because more men work in better-paid sectors and better-paid jobs
- women often face a ‘glass ceiling’; they do not move on to senior positions even when they have the same qualifications as men
- gender role stereotypes still predominate and our workforces are often segregated into women’s work and men’s work
The pay gap between men and women’s wages is now a staggering 18.2%, nearly 1% worse than 2013, and the worst it has been in 20 years. Men on average will earn $14,500 more than a woman, who will have to work 66 days more to earn it while each year women in Australia have to work an additional 30 days to make the same wage as men.
The Australia Institute’s report What’s choice got to do with it! shows that a woman working full-time in commerce, with no children and limited caring responsibilities, ends up with approximately 9% less in superannuation savings than the average male at retirement. It’s telling that even upon graduating women are starting out on wages that are on average 9.4% less than men, according to data from Graduate Careers Australia. The pay gap exists as soon as women step foot into the workforce, and merely gets larger as they continue in the workforce.
This inequality greatly diminishes the ability of many families to get by and wage inequality will continue to grow as more and more insecure forms of work become the norm rather than the exception. It’s not a problem that can be solely attributed to women taking career breaks, working flexibly for a period and/or not reaching leadership positions. It’s an issue that we all have to take responsibility for and to work to reduce the gap, especially given that Australia’s wage gap has grown in the last year.
Ultimately equal pay must be on the Government’s agenda and considered in all areas of policy development – not just those concerned with the workplace. And it must also be considered at the upcoming G20 meeting in Brisbane if the world is to truely address growing economic inequality.
It’s hard to believe that Blog Action Day is here again. This year, like the past few years, I’ll be participating in Blog Action Day. The topic or theme for this year’s Blog Action Day is inequality. This is a growing concern in Australia and something that must be tackled if we want a more compassionate and fairer country and world.
If you’re not sure what Blog Action Day is all about then the information in this post from the organising team might help you out.
How you can take part in Blog Action Day 2014
This year the Blog Action Day is on Thursday October 16 and the theme is Inequality
We know that some bloggers might find developing a post about Inequality in just a few days might feel a bit daunting, especially if you don’t normally cover it in your regular posts. It may even be what has been putting your off from registering your blog to take part in Blog Action Day.
To make it a little bit easier, here are some ideas to help you develop your blog post.
- If you’re short on time, work together with other bloggers or friends you know to produce content together. Start by asking each other “What does Inequality mean to you.”
- Ask your blog and social media followers what they would like to know about Inequality and focus your post on trying to answer their questions.
- Do you have a favorite Charity or Not-For-Profit organisation? Many charities and Not-for-profits start out by responding to help people or communities that were affected by inequality. Write a post about their aims and how they have made a difference.
- Find out what our Blog Action Day partners think about Inequality, as inspiration for your post.
- Take a look at these videos we have put together that cover a range of inequality issues. What questions to they make you ask yourself.
- Have you or your friends, family or community been directly affected by inequality. What was that like? Where you able to overcome it
- Are you inspired by someone who has overcome great hardships and obstacles.
To make sure you make the most out of Blog Action Day, take a look at our Ideas to create and promote your Blog Action Day post.
We are looking forward to seeing what you have to say about Inequality on October 16, so don’t forget to register, get your post ready and join bloggers from all over the world.
If you don’t have time to write a blog post, please come and visit the Livestream of Blog Action Day coverage on our homepage, visit the blogs taking part, leave comments and share your favourite posts with the team by tweeting us or leaving a message on Facebook.