Sunday 21 April 2024

Contact 1800 772 679

Contact 1800 772 679

The magazine of the Public Service Association of NSW and the Community and Public Sector Union (NSW Branch)

Better Bargaining Can Cut Gender Wage Cap

Better Bargaining Can Cut Gender Wage Cap <br><br>

Multi-employer deals can reduce disparity in salaries.

Multi-employer bargaining in the federal industrial relations system will strengthen equal pay laws, making it easier for women, especially in women-dominated industries, to address systemic unequal pay, claims a report from the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU).

The report, Reducing the Gender Pay Gap with multi-employer bargaining; outlines how the Secure Jobs, Better Pay Bill will make a substantial difference in closing the gender pay gap, which has recently expanded after stalling in the final five years of the Liberal National Government in Canberra.

The Bill strengthens equal-pay laws. The report also finds that improving collective bargaining will also make a substantial contribution to closing the pay gap. Women on collective agreements currently earn $102.60 per week more than women who are not, and workplaces with a collective agreement have smaller gender pay gaps than those without.

The Bill’s main multi-employer bargaining streams would also help close the gender pay gap.

Of the eight industries with the highest gender pay gaps, seven would likely be covered by single-interest multi-employer bargaining, while sectors such as aged care, early childhood education and care and administration and support services – which would benefit from the supported stream – are dominated by systemically underpaid women.

The report also finds that the 12 countries with higher rates of multi-employer bargaining than Australia have an average gender pay gap of 10.5 per cent compared to Australia’s 15.3 per cent, using the OECD measure of median full-time earnings from 2021.

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