Labor seeks to empower Fair Work to order pay increases to address gender pay gap

Labor seeks to empower Fair Work to order pay increases to address gender pay gap

by Jason Roberts

April 06, 2021

Australian Labor Party leader Anthony Albanese has committed to strengthen the ability and capacity of the Fair Work Commission to order pay increases for workers in low paid, female dominated industries as part of Labor’s vision to close the gender pay gap.

 

The announcement comes in the wake of the release of the details of Labor’s Secure Australian Jobs Plan that is targeted at a range of policies designed to improve worker’s job security, encourage better pay and create a fairer industrial relations system.

 

The Closing the Gender Pay Gap push will see a focus on four key areas:

 

  • Legislation that forces companies with more than 250 employees will have to report their gender pay gap publicly.

 

  • The prohibiting of pay secrecy clauses and give employees the right to disclose their pay, if they want to.

 

  • Action to address the gender pay gap in the Australian Public Service.

 

  • The strengthening of the ability and capacity of the Fair Work Commission to order pay increases for workers in low paid, female dominated industries.

 

Although not referenced specifically, it is understood that the early childhood education and care sector would meet the criteria for point four, alongside aged care and health care workers, which were included in the Labor press release. 

 

Specifically, the details of the Vision state: 

 

“And lastly – but importantly – we will strengthen the ability of the Fair Work Commission to order pay rises for workers in low paid, female dominated industries. In these industries, women’s work has been undervalued even though the pandemic showed us just how valuable it is. We act – because boosting women’s wages means closing the gender pay gap.”

 

To review the Closing the Gender Pay Gap Vision please click here

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