Bill proposes exposure of gender pay gap
Bigger employers will have to reveal their average hourly rates for men and women by 2013, according to the new Equalities Bill, published today.
Minister for Equality Harriet Harman says that businesses employing more than 250 staff will have until 2013 to voluntarily publish pay rates, but added that gagging clauses under which employees are not allowed to reveal their pay details will be banned. She said the proposals would “narrow the gap between rich and poor and make Britain more equal”. Employers have complained that it is yet more legislation at a time when they are struggling.
According to the latest figures, women in the UK still earn 23% less per hour than men.
Civil Service needs shift on part-time opportunities
The report, "We need to talk about hours. Job advertising in the Civil Service", looks at the availability of part-time jobs in the Civil Service. The Civil Service was chosen as an example of a major employer with progressive policies on work life balance.
EU to debate increase to paid maternity leave
The European Union is to debate increasing paid maternity leave to 20 weeks.
If successful, the debate, in the first week of May, could see a steep rise in the paid maternity leave allowed to UK mothers. They currently rank third bottom in terms of maternity allowance in the EU.
They currently get only six weeks' maternity leave paid at 90% of average earnings followed by 33 weeks at £117.18, or 90% of average weekly earnings.
Also being debated is protection from redundancy or dismissal for the first six months of mothers' return from maternity leave.
25% of employees 'complacent' about their jobs
A quarter of employees are not going to change the way they do their jobs due to the recession, according to a poll by recruitment organisation Monster.
However over half said they would try to raise their profile during the recession. A small percentage said they would come in earlier and leave later, but Monster recommends that it is pointless and may be counterproductive to do this on a regular basis. Much better, it says, is focusing on the quality of your work.