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Call for pay transparency in the vocational education sector

Change is afoot in New Zealand’s vocational education system and staff want to ensure that the changes include embedding principles around pay transparency.

Members of Te Hautū Kauhurangi | NZ Tertiary Education Union have today sent a letter to the Prime Minister signed by members and supporters from Whangarei to Dunedin. They are asking Jacinda Ardern to once again be a champion for women.

“We’re asking the Prime Minister to help us push pay transparency as a fundamental action for the planned NZ Institute of Skills and Technology,” says Sarah Proctor-Thomson, TEU Women’s Vice President.

“It’s not complicated to do and shows a real commitment to equity in the tertiary education sector.”

The unified vocational education provider would have to report annually on its gender pay gap, including the ethnicity/gender pay gap and make that information publicly available, says Proctor-Thomson.

Jacinda Ardern’s commitment to pay equity and the strong words around staff wellbeing in the proposed charter for the NZ Institute of Skills and Technology give us some hope that pay transparency is achievable.

Why is pay transparency important?

Because New Zealand does not currently have a legal requirement for businesses to report on their gender or ethnic pay gap, and employees do not know what other people in the same or similar job or occupation are earning.

For women this secrecy is harmful and perpetuates gender inequality in pay rates, particularly for women from ethnic minority groups.

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