Equal Pay Day - 26 years is too long to wait

20 Aug 2021 1:07 PM | Angela Tomazos (Administrator)

Australian Federation of Business and Professional Women (BPW Australia) is marking Equal Pay Day 2021 by joining Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) on the call for Australians to ask #WhatsYourPayGap in their workplaces and industries. A crucial step towards bridging this divide. Research proves when organisation analyse and take action on pay equity , the gender pay gap closes.   

The Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) announced Equal Pay Day 2021 will fall on 31st August marking the 61 additional days from the end of the previous financial year that women must work to earn the same pay as men.

Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) is an Australian Government statutory agency created by the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012. The Agency is charged with promoting and improving gender equality in the Australian Workplaces.

Key facts in 2021;

  • The national gender pay gap is 14.2%.
  • This is a 0.8pp rise from the previous gender pay gap of 13.4%
  • On average, women working full-time earned $1,575.50 while men working full-time earned $1,837.00.
  • Full-time average weekly earnings difference between women and men is $261.50.

So; what can we do? what steps can we take, as individuals or a collective, to increase this ‘on average’ calculation? To broaden the conversation; nuance the considerations and change the narrative? To achieve a more just, more equal and more inclusive society for a strong and thriving Australia; how do we make concrete steps towards this?


This year we are encouraging our BPW Australia club members and networks to join WGEA call for the first step to find out #WhatsYourPayGap? by going to WGEA Data Explorer at www.data.wgea.gov.au/home  and seeing if their employer has done a pay gap audit and acted on its findings. We want our clubs to join in the call to start a conversation with members and their networks about the gender pay gap, what it means to them and how we can help to close it. We can all work together to eliminate gender pay discrimination.” Jacqueline Graham, BPW Australia President said.

“BPW Australia surveyed women earlier this year on their experiences and expectations of the future of work. We found women were telling us they lack the confidence on current policy settings valuing their work , for example the skills and pay for someone pushing the wheelbarrow vs someone pushing the wheelchair.”  Jacqueline said.

WGEA Director Mary Wooldridge said the increase in the pay gap was concerning and served as a warning to ensure continued focus, effort and commitment to drive it back down again.

“Closing the pay gap is about fairness. Our data shows women’s average full-time wages are lower than men’s across every industry and occupation in Australia. ’The gender pay gap signifies that the work of women is still not treated as being of equal value to that of men. The 2021 Gender Equity Insights Report from Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre (BCEC) and WGEA research reveals, the sobering reality is that, on current trends, it will take 26 years to close the total remuneration gender pay gap.” Mary Wooldridge said.

To find out more , go to www.equalpayday.com.au

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