NWCI calls for amendments to Gender Pay Gap Information Bill
Published: Monday, May 13, 2019
The National Women’s Council of Ireland (NWCI) today welcomed the introduction of the Gender Pay Gap Information Bill in the Dail, but expressed concern that the Bill does not go far enough, and called for amendments to strengthen the legislation.
Orla O’Connor, Director of NWCI said,
“The Gender Pay Gap Information Bill will, for the first time, require employers to publish statistics on the gender pay gap within an organisation, shining the spotlight on pay imbalances. While this is to be welcomed, the legislation will only initially apply to companies of 250 staff or more and then, on a phased basis, move to companies employing 50 or more staff. NWCI, alongside ICTU, SIPTU, and Fórsa had called on the Bill to apply to employers with 20 or more employees. Given that 91.8% of companies employ fewer than ten employees, the proposed threshold is inadequate, and means that majority of employers fall outside its scope.”
Orla O’Connor said,
“The legislation does contain a welcome requirement for companies to provide a statement alongside their statistics setting out the proposals they will take to remedy the gender pay gap is very welcome inclusion. The inclusion of a narrative to contextualise the statistics, alongside an Action Plan to eliminate the identified gaps, were strongly advocated for by NWCI during the pre-legislative scrutiny of the proposed legislation. We are calling for the Bill to be amended to ensure that this Action Plan is a mandatory requirement.”
Orla O’Connor concluded,
“The gender pay gap of 13.9% in Ireland has serious implications for a woman’s lifetime earnings, her life and career decisions and her ability to live in older years with a decent income. The experience from other countries shows that harder measures are needed to combat pay inequality, and it is very disappointing that this legislation is not more broadly applicable.”
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