Labour will close the gender pay gap by 2030

The Labour Party has outlined their target of closing the gender pay gap by 2030, as part of their electoral promises.

Marking Equal Pay Day, Laura Pidcock, Shadow Employment Rights Secretary and Dawn Butler, Shadow Women and Equalities Secretary, said that the next Labour government will close the gender pay gap by: introducing a real living wage of £10 an hour; create a new Workers’ Protection Agency working in partnership with HMRC with powers to fine organisations that fail to report their gender pay; require all employers with over 250 employees to obtain government certification on gender equality or face further auditing and fines; extend statutory maternity pay from nine to 12 months and introducing free childcare for all 2-4 year olds; strengthen protections against unfair dismissal and redundancies, with extra rights for pregnant women; and require large employers to introduce a menopause workplace policy to break the stigma associated with the menopause.

Pidcock said: “For far too long the interests of working women have been at the bottom of the list of priorities for government. Labour in government will be uncompromising in tackling the structural barriers that is holding so many women back. Employers will no longer be able to treat the issue of the gender pay gap as an afterthought. Instead, they will be expected to take proactive steps to close it. Labour will deliver the real change that women need in the workplace.”

Butler added: “It’s not good enough that under the current government’s plans, it will take another 60 years to close the gender pay gap. Labour’s real living wage, robust gender pay auditing – including fining organisations that fail to take action, will help us deliver real change and meet this ambitious target.”

The Conservative Party said that Labour was ‘over-promising’ and reiterated that the pay gap was at a record low, pointing to ‘huge progress since 2010’ in terms of the number of women in work.

At the current rate, the Fawcett Society said it would take until almost 2080 for the gender pay gap to close.