Addressing the International Women’s Day Parliamentary Breakfast today Bill Shorten was simply wrong when he said “the gender pay gap is not moving.”
In fact, the latest figures show that the gender pay gap for average weekly earnings of full-time employees has narrowed further over the last twelve months, falling from 16.3 per cent to 15.3 per cent – an 11 year low.
This is a serious issue and the Leader of the Opposition does Australian women no service by playing politics rather than outlining his plan to improve their financial security.
The pay gap is influenced by a number of factors including: time out of the workforce, numbers of hours worked in paid work, educational attainment, seniority, segregation of the workforce by gender and sexual discrimination.
That is why the Turnbull Government has a strategy to increased women’s participation in the workforce with record investment in childcare, paid parental leave, measures to address workplace flexibility and real investment to encourage women into the male dominated STEM sector.
This strategy is delivering real results with the ABS today confirming that the female labour force participation rate is at an all-time high in January 2018.
Mr Shorten’s disingenuous talk demonstrates that he is once again more focussed on his own job than the work and career prospects of Australian women.