Women Still Lag Men In Equality At Work

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Years of campaigning for equal rights in the workplace have done little to close the pay gap for women, according to new figures.

In the 28 nation European Union, the average pay gap is 16.4% in favour of men, says a new report from the EU.

Women lag men’s wages by only 5% in Slovenia – but the gap widens to more than 20% in Estonia, Austria, the Czech Republic and Germany.

The EU works out the gender pay gap by taking the average gross earnings of women as a percentage of those of men.

Meanwhile, another similar report by recruitment firm Bayt in the Middle East shows 43% of women working in The Middle East and North Africa are paid less than their male colleagues.

Pay and promotion

The results come from the revelations of 1,500 women in 13 countries in the region. Only 3% believed they had pay parity with men.

Women were also disgruntled about the careers and remuneration:

  • 27% claimed men received a better benefit package
  • While half of women felt gender played no part in promotion decisions, 33% of women, particularly from Saudi Arabia, Oman and Syria, believed their bosses discriminated against them when hiring or promoting
  • Two thirds of women professed no preference about working for a man or woman – but more than three-quarters have a male boss
  • 72% of men and women work for a mixed gender employer, but 15% in offices are segregated from their male colleagues and only 13% had women-only workplaces

Both surveys were released for International Women’s Day. Bayt disclosed that two-thirds of women in the MENA region felt workplace gender equality in the region was similar to that in Europe, the US and Canada.

Boardroom block

However, women in North African countries, such as Tunisia felt they had gained more equality than women in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman and Jordan, where a fifth of women alleged jobs were easier to come by for men.

Bayt’s Suha Mardelli said: “Women are undoubtedly now more empowered in the workplace across the Middle East and North Africa than at any time ever before and conditions are continually improving.

“The aim is for women to be completely equal in the boardroom as well as on the shop floor, but the region still has some way to go to achieve that status.”

The United Arab Emirates is one country at the vanguard of equal workplace rights and pay with 60% making up the government workforce and 70% of all graduates, said Mardelli.

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