26 September 2023

NEW ZEALAND: Women closing the gap on PS pay

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The gender pay gap in New Zealand’s Public Service is now the smallest on record, a Government report has revealed.

Minister for Women, Jan Tinetti (pictured) said the gap between men and women employed in the Public Service fell to 8.6 per cent in 2021 from 9.6 per cent the previous year.

When measurement began in 2000, it was at 18.6 per cent.

The Government has tried to close the gap by employing more women in leadership positions, eliminating gaps within the same roles and increasing work flexibility to retain women.

Significant pay gaps persist for Maori and ethnic minorities, in the State sector the Maori gap narrowed to 8.3 per cent from 9.3 per cent in 2020, while the Pacific pay gap fell to 17.9 per cent from 19.5 per cent and the Asian gap declined to 11.6 per cent from 12.8 per cent.

Meanwhile, the country’s lowest-paid Public Servants, including cleaners, caterers, and security guards, are to be paid at least the living wage of NZ$22.75 (A$21.83) an hour, the Government announced.

Minister for the Public Service, Chris Hipkins said Departments and Agencies had been directed to ensure contracts signed or renewed after 1 December for these workers, who are employed through third parties, would pay the current living wage.

“Many Departments have already moved to address low wages for these workers, but the Government needs to send a clear signal to give greater certainty,” Mr Hipkins said.

The Living Wage is calculated to reflect the hourly wage a worker needs to be paid for the necessities of life and to participate as an active citizen in the community.

Wellington, 17 November 2021

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