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Call to Remove Kate Sheppard From $10 Note,

Call to Remove Kate Sheppard From $10 Note, Replace with Man

YWCA Auckland launches a new campaign to #demandequalpay

29 July 2014 – YWCA Auckland is continuing the fight for gender pay equality in New Zealand with its latest campaign which calls for the Governor of the Reserve Bank to remove gallant suffragette Kate Sheppard from the $10 note.

In 1893 Kate Sheppard played a pivotal role in history, successfully campaigning for New Zealand women to be the first in the world to have the right to vote. It is for this reason that Kate graces the front of the $10 note, but now the YWCA is asking how Kate would respond knowing that today, for every $10 a man earns, a woman only earns $9.

Bringing this inequality into the spotlight, the YWCA has created a $9 note in place of the $10, especially for women in New Zealand. And in an open letter to the Governor of the Reserve Bank, YWCA asks Graeme Wheeler to remove Kate from the $10 and replace her with a ‘more fitting’ man.

The campaign follows the inaugural YWCA Equal Pay Awards held last Wednesday, established to recognise and reward New Zealand businesses which demonstrated rigorous commitment to the equal pay journey within their respective organisations. Westpac was awarded first place - the Gold Award - for best practice as an equal pay employer.

Monica Briggs, CEO of YWCA Auckland, says, “Equal pay is a key focus for YWCA Auckland. While we aim to raise awareness of the existing 13% pay gap, we are passionate about working alongside the business community to inspire change. The Awards were the start of that journey and now Kate joins us for part two.”

“By reintroducing the late, great Kate Sheppard to Kiwis in this new light, we’re hoping people will look at the issue through a broader lens as we ask them to consider whether we can still call ourselves a socially progressive nation, given the impact this issue is having on our society,” adds Sina Wendt-Moore, Co-President, YWCA.

In the New Zealand Income Survey report (June 2013 quarter) the average full-time hourly earnings for a man was $28.33 while the average full-time hourly earnings for a woman was $25.06.

According to YWCA Auckland, the public perception is that the pay gap between men and women forms when women leave work to have children, when in actual fact, in the private sector, evidence suggests that pay gaps are forming in the first five years of employment, right from graduate level. For instance, the New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants surveyed its own sector to discover that male chartered accountants with five years’ experience earn $3,605 more on average than their female counterparts.

The YWCA’s message to employers is universal, encouraging organisations to take a progressive stance and make this issue a priority, whether large or small, in the public or private sector.

“We want Kiwis, both men and women, to join the debate and continue to help us campaign for gender pay equality,” adds Monica.

Join the debate at #demandequalpay.

Watch the campaign video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dWUsbpbP-mg

- ENDS -

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