Because of a lingering gap between what female and male workers earn, women in Britain are effectively working for free from Monday until the end of 2015. The government has called the discrepancies “a scandal.”
Women working full-time in Britain took home about 5,000 pounds ($7,500, 6,980 euros) less a year than their male colleagues, women’s rights pressure group Fawcett Society reported Monday.
It said this year’s Equal Pay Day, marking the day after which women basically worked for free, came 52 days before the end of the year, compared with 56 days in 2014.
The Fawcett Society said the gap between earnings stood at 14.2 percent, an improvement on15.7 percent last year.
Northern Europeans in the lead
But despite the small change for the better, recent polls indicated that equal pay was a major concern among female British employees.
Prime Minister David Cameron had called the gap “a scandal,” pledging to force large companies to publish the average pay of male and female employees.
Last year, Britain went from 18th place to 26th in the Global Gender Gap Report by the World Economic Forum.
The report showed Iceland, Finland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark as being the world’s most gender-equal societies, with Yemen bringing up the rear.
hg/pad (Reuters, Fawcett Society)