Equal pay

When I hear somethings on the news that is misleading I get annoyed - and this is one topic that really annoy me.

Do men earn more than women in Australia? I’m sure you have seen this in the newspapers.   The statistics say yes and the unions say yes.

But what does this really mean?

I earn the same as my male colleagues, male and female teachers, police, librarians, nurses (at the same level) earn the same and this is the case in almost all sectors.  There may be some differences at the very top of the corporate ladder, however most (almost all) are not at that level.  Basically men and women are taking home the same pay package - equal work for equal pay, I completely agree with this and it is happening.

So what are the unions talking about and what is their fight for EQUAL PAY?

If you look at the statistics, in particular average weekly earnings — men certainly earn more than women . . . why;
  • More women are employed in lower paid employment e.g. such as  hairdressing, retail and childcare compared to men
  • More men are employed in industries that are high paying e.g. in the mining industry (which is currently booming)
  • More women are in part-time employment (work less hours than men), in particular those at child bearing ages
  • Most women break or reduce their job patterns when they have children and this in turn can reduces career prospects and earning potentials e.g. working part-time employment can reduce career opportunities
The  truth is, men and women are paid the same, it’s just that women are working different hours and taking time off work to care for their children.  While women continue to take on the bulk of responsibility for child care and other household tasks they will continue to be disadvantaged in the workplace relative to men — this  is a fact of life — it is also a choice.   The only way unions can close the pay gap is to get more women back into full time work — but this is a ridiculous argument.  What the unions don’t seem to understand is families can make choices and if women want to work full-time, part-time, or not at all — they are fully aware of their choices on their income and careers.   As a result the gap will never close, it is a futile argument.

Interestingly, women and men under the age of 30 have no gender pay gap, as this isn’t the age group of women taking time off to care for children. 

Governments and unions should be encourage choice for women to stay at home (if they wish) and care for their children  They should also be encouraging companies to offer flexible part-time hours to allow those women to work if they wish.

Interestedly, mature-age women still prefer working part-time or casual and put in no more hours than their mothers did a generation before. And this is the group that experienced the biggest push from the feminist movement.


  1. That's really interesting, Jo! I do think it's sad that a lot of women wait until their 30s to start a family - the older they are when children are born, the younger their children will be when they face the grief of the death or illness of their parents. This has got to make a difference on society (although I can't quite decide what this will do in the long-term).

    I agree that it is silly for them to be harping on about women not being paid equally, when the facts are obvious (from what you wrote here). Another thing that is annoying is the way society and economy etc make single-income families suffer for their choice to have a single-income. Most single-income families struggle because the economy is geared for high income households.

    Do you know what the average household income is in Australia? I'd be interested if you know anything about those statistics... :)

  2. According to the 2007/08 ABS Household Income and Income Distribution publication:

    Gross household income (Median): $1285.5 per week ($66,846 annually)

    Gross household income where only 1 person is employed (median): $1,111 or $57,772 annually.

    This would have increased since 2007/08 but it gives you an indication.

    Talking about having babies later in life - a woman in the Netherlands has justhad her first baby at the grand age of 63!! She will be her 80's when she celebrates her childs 21st.

  3. WOW! I can't imagine having a first child at the age most women are *more* likely to be becoming grandparents!! How would you have the energy to run after a little baby???

    Thanks for the statistics, Jo... It's very interesting. I wonder where most single-income families fit in those stats??

  4. That's interesting Jo.
    Especially the statistics on the women who came through the feminist push.
    First baby at 63..I don't know.
    I feel sorry for the child.
    It will have a very different life from it's peers because of the age (and associated problems)of the mother. Doubtless it will probably be loved..but left alone at an early age when the parent passes away.
    Still God knows...

  5. Well - that's not right~~ At least in my profession - Nursing - we all make the same wages. I wold be furious if a man made more than me in the same job profession! (because every body knows that women are smarter!)



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