Huge ‘im­bal­ance’ in coun­cil jobs as pay gap re­vealed Large num­ber of women in part-time roles due to ‘re­gres­sive child care pol­icy’, claims deputy

Birmingham Post - - NEWS - Carl Jack­son Coun­cil Cor­re­spon­dent

BIRM­ING­HAM City Coun­cil’s deputy leader has hit out at na­tional child care poli­cies which mean men work­ing for the au­thor­ity earn ten per cent more on av­er­age than women.

Deputy leader Brigid Jones ad­mit­ted there was a “mas­sive im­bal­ance”, par­tic­u­larly among part-time roles pre­dom­i­nantly filled by fe­males.

It is the first time the coun­cil has pub­lished gen­der pay gap fig­ures.

All em­ploy­ers with more than 250 staff are now legally re­quired to is­sue the statis­tics.

A re­port, which used fig­ures taken from March 31, 2017 and ex­cluded school work­ers, showed that women ac­counted for two thirds (67 per cent) of the coun­cil’s staff.

That was heav­ily in­flu­enced by the fact fe­males make up 84 per cent of the part-time ros­ter due to “a higher pro­por­tion of women tend­ing to seek a home life bal­ance com­pared to men”, ac­cord­ing to the re­port.

Full-time work­ers were more evenly split with 52 per cent be­ing women and 48 per cent men.

The over­all av­er­age pay gap showed that men typ­i­cally pick up 9.1 per cent more than women, although it was far less than the na­tional av­er­age of 17.4 per cent.

How­ever, full-time women ac­tual- ly tended to earn 5.2 per cent more than full-time men.

Cllr Jones said: “We have seen some truly shock­ing rev­e­la­tions come out so far [na­tion­ally] and no doubt there’s more to come as more and more em­ploy­ers pub­lish.

“Here in Birm­ing­ham our fig­ures com­pare favourably to the na­tional av­er­age but there is still not a great story to tell.

“Women in full-time work ac­tu­ally, on av­er­age, earn more than men and that’s largely due to the large num­ber of so­cial work­ers, par­tic­u­larly fe­male chil­dren so­cial work­ers in our work­force.

“But if you look at the vast num­ber of women in part-time work in the coun­cil it re­flects a mas­sive im­bal­ance in our so­ci­ety per­pet­u­ated by highly re­gres­sive ma­ter­nity and child care poli­cies at a na­tional level in this coun­try. These mean 40 per cent of women in this coun­try are in part­time work com­pared to only 12 per cent of men, and that is a ma­jor fac­tor in the gen­der pay gap in this coun­cil.”

The gen­der pay gap is not the same as equal pay although it is fre­quently con­fused with it.

Equal pay is en­sur­ing men and women do­ing the same job are paid the same which has been a le­gal re­quire­ment for nearly half a cen­tury un­der the Equal Pay Act 1970.

The gen­der pay gap is the dif­fer­ence in av­er­age hourly pay be­tween males and fe­males cov­er­ing all jobs from clean­ers up to the chief ex­ec­u­tive.

There is no sin­gle rea­son be­hind the gap although it is com­monly be­lieved more women have care re­spon­si­bil­i­ties for chil­dren or el­derly rel­a­tives and are still more likely to be in low-skilled, low-paid jobs. There are also claims of dis­crim­i­na­tion against new moth­ers.

The vast num­ber of women in part­time work in the coun­cil re­flects a mas­sive im­bal­ance in our so­ci­ety Cllr Brigid Jones

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.