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CEO's Sexism Highlights Need for Pay Equity Reform

Employers' Collective CEO's Sexism Highlights Need for Pay Equity Reform

Press Release: Young Labour

Thursday 23rd June

Young Labour is condemning sexist assertions made by Alasdair Thompson of the Employers and Manufacturers Association that women should be paid less than men because of biological differences.

“Mr Thompson's suggestion that women are paid less because they menstruate – and that this is fair – is outrageous,” Young Labour President Ella Hardy says.

“As the CEO of an organisation representing employers he should be working to ensure bosses do not discriminate on the basis of gender, rather than trying to justify the gender pay gap.”

On average, women in New Zealand are paid around 12% less than men who do the same work as them.

Young Labour's Women's Representative Shona Jowett says the idea some people have of all women being so sick that they are unable to work once a month is an inaccurate stereotype of how periods affect women.

She adds that her organisation welcomes new pay equity legislation drafted by Green MP Catherine Delahunty, and will campaign to gain support for it.

“Catherine Delahunty's bill requires employers to disclose more information to help determine whether they are discriminating on the basis of gender when setting wages,” Ms Jowett explains.

“The fact that someone like Mr Thompson who represents a wide range of New Zealand employers has such a sexist attitude shows how urgently we need to make this sort of change to our employment law”, she says.

New Zealand's current Equal Pay legislation is 40 years old.


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