Pay gap between men and women revealed
- Credit: PA
The shocking scale of the pay gap between men and women working in Norwich has been revealed, with new figures showing men can expect to earn 23pc more than women.
And another report has shown that across Norfolk as a whole, the gap between male and female full-time workers is 15.3pc, with a 19.2pc gap in Suffolk.
While the median earning for a full-time male worker in Norwich is £13.71 an hour, for women it is £10.56. The difference between male and female workers nationally is 10pc, so the gap in Norwich far outstrips the picture for Great Britain.
The average hourly Norfolk wage for men working full time is £14.26 and is £12.23 for women. In Suffolk, it was £15.09 for men and £12.20 for women.
Brenda Arthur, (pictured below), leader of Norwich City Council, said she was shocked by the disparity in the city and called for the gap to be closed, while Caroline Williams, chief executive of the Norwich Chamber of Commerce, said that research had shown that, despite women being more qualified, they were paid less.
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Figures show that between 2011 and 2012, the workplace earnings for Norwich women have fallen by 5.3pc – at a time when nationally they have gone up by 1.2pc.
Median (the median is the middle in a series of numbers, irrespective of whether there is a larger total number of examples below or above that point) workplace earnings for men in Norwich have gone up by 4.7pc over the same period, higher than the national increase of 1.2pc.
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The median hourly pay for both men and women is £12.17, lower than the national figure of £12.78.
If the figures used are those for people who live in Norwich, rather than for people who only work here (some of whom are commuters from outside the city council area) then the picture is even bleaker.
The median full-time hourly pay for people living in Norwich is £11.15, compared to £12.80 nationally.
Resident median earnings for female full-time workers have gone down by 1.6pc to £10.64 an hour, while nationally they have increased by 2.2pc. For men, they have fallen by 0.7pc to £11.39, while nationally, earnings increased by 1.2pc.
The report states: 'This highlights the impact that commuting has on Norwich – the difference in workplace and residents' wages for male workers is a consequence of well-paid jobs in Norwich being taken by workers living outside the local authority.'
The figures have been revealed after research was carried out by officers in the economic development team at Norwich City Council to inform a new economic strategy for the authority.
The report states there is 'clear evidence of a pay gap between men and women – the workplace differential is bigger in Norwich than nationally.'
It adds: 'Earnings in Norwich are comparatively low – probably as a result of the city's relatively isolated location and large rural hinterland, which means there is less wage competition than in many other areas in the UK.'
Norwich City Council has achieved living wage accreditation with the Living Wage Foundation and is championing the benefits of a living wage with other employers.
The figure is decided annually by the Centre for Research in Social Policy at Loughborough University and, for outside London, is currently set at £7.45 per hour.
Mrs Arthur, whose role as council leader includes economic development, said of the pay gap between men and women: 'I am quite shocked by it.
'I thought that society would have moved on from that, but it appears not.
'It would be really good if wages could increase across Norwich. At the city council we are a Living Wage authority and are trying to raise the profile of that with those we work with.'
Amanda Ankin, from Suffolk Business Women, which has nearly 80 members, and client services manager at the Suffolk Chamber of Commerce, said: 'I don't think women are valued in their part-time work as a whole. Very often they have to take time off for childcare or caring for elderly relatives.
'Businesses don't offer enough flexible hours in part-time jobs. Businesses need to copy the more flexible northern European businesses.'
She added that women could do more to shout from the rooftops about their achievements at work.