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Equal Pay

Women and Equalities written question – answered on 27th March 2019.

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Photo of Baroness Brady Baroness Brady Conservative

To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to reduce the gender pay gap; when they estimate that gap to close; and what steps they are taking to hasten the closure of that gap.

Photo of Baroness Williams of Trafford Baroness Williams of Trafford The Minister of State, Home Department, Minister for Equalities (Department for International Development)

The rate at which the gender pay gap will narrow is dependent on a large number of complex factors but this government is working hard to help employers close the gap as soon as possible. Whilst we are pleased that the gap is at a record low of 17.9%, having dropped by 9.6 percentage points since 1997, there is more to do to ensure this progress continues.

In 2017 we introduced ground-breaking regulations requiring large employers to publish their gender pay gaps annually. We are now supporting employers to develop action plans and take effective steps to reduce their gaps.

The government is also:

- Spending around £6billion in 2019-20 on childcare support and we have already doubled the childcare entitlement for working parents of 3 and 4 year olds.

- Set up a taskforce to make flexible working a possibility for all employees; and last year ran a £1.5million campaign promoting Shared Parental Leave.

- Supporting the Hampton-Alexander Review, aiming to get more women into senior leadership positions and improve gender diversity in the executive pipeline.

Taking steps to break down gender stereotypes, including funding programmes in schools and colleges to encourage more girls to consider careers in science, technology, engineering and maths.

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