Did you know that Women in the EU earn on average 13% less than their male counterparts? The gender pay gap has largely stagnated over the last decade.
There are a number of things which contribute to the gender pay gap, however, pay discrimination has been identified as one of the key obstacles. Unequal pay puts women at greater risk of poverty and contributes to the EU’s pension pay gap.
This is why pay transparency is so important, and why the EU have created new rules to combat pay discrimination and hopefully help close the gender pay gap.
So, what are the new regulations?
Employers with at least 100 employees will have to publish information on the pay gap between female and male workers. In a first stage, employers with at least 250 employees will report every year and employers with between 150 and 249 employees will report every three years. After five years of the directive, employers with between 100 and 149 employees will also have to report every three years.
And what happens if a pay gap is found?
Under the pay transparency directive, EU companies will be required to share information about how much they pay women and men for work of equal value and take action if their gender pay gap exceeds 5%.
There will then be better access to justice for the victims of pay discrimination in the form of:
- Compensation for workers – workers who have suffered gender pay discrimination can receive compensation, including full recovery of back pay and related bonuses or payments in kind.
- Burden of proof on employer – where the employer did not fulfil its transparency obligations, it will be for the employer, not the worker, to prove that there was no discrimination in relation to pay.
- Sanctions will include fines – Member States should establish specific penalties for infringements of the equal pay rule, including fines.
If you find that there is a gender pay gap then equality bodies and workers’ representatives may act in legal or administrative proceedings on behalf of workers.
What do you think of these new reporting measures? Are they enough to combat the gender pay gap?