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Government announces initiatives to reduce gender pay gap

Posted: 10th December 2014   In: Business Employment, Individual Employment

The government has announced that a £2m fund is to be spent on initiatives aimed at reducing the gender pay gap.

The funding will go towards training, events and monitoring programmes for women to help them move from low paid, low skilled work to jobs that are high paid and high skilled.

The measures will also help female employees to hold their companies to account over equal pay.

The overall pay gap is 19.7% which is lower than the 25% figure ten years ago. However, although the gap has narrowed, it is still significant, especially for older and part time workers.

One of the reasons for the gap is that there are more women in low paid jobs. The training on offer is aimed at helping them move into higher paid professions.

It is to be carried out by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills and will target women working in the science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM), retail and hospitality management, and agricultural sectors.

The government will also:

• publish guidance to help women compare their pay to their male counterparts
• invest £50,000 in further advice to enable female employees to hold their companies to account if they think they are not being paid correctly
• launch free pay analysis software to be made available to all companies to calculate at their gender pay gap
• implement further measures to strengthen the existing Think, Act, Report initiative.

Minister for Women and Equalities Nicky Morgan said: “The measures we’re announcing today will help to tackle the pay gap head-on. We will support women to move out of low paid, low skilled work, into high paid, high skilled work, through providing better training and mentoring. We will also give both women and employers the tools to assess and address unfair pay.”

The measures will make it easier for female employees to identify pay gaps within their company and also bring the issue to the attention of their bosses.

Please contact John Carter if you would like more information about the issues raised in this article or any aspect of employment law.