The Senate Inquiry’s ‘Gender segregation in the workplace and its impact on women’s economic equality’ report has been tabled, making recommendations for the implementation of a national policy framework to achieve national pay equality.
Hearings were held in Sydney and Melbourne during April, with 42 submissions received by the Labor-dominated committee.
The committee recommended coordinated efforts to address factors that adversely affect women’s workforce participation and gender segregation including reforms to flexible work, an extension to the period of PPL and improved access to affordable high quality early childhood education and care.
Other recommendations included:
- The amendment of the Fair Work Act 2009 to improve its capacity to address equal remuneration;
- That the Department of Education and Training update the National Career Development Strategy and the Australian Blueprint for Career Development in order to address the need for gender-sensitive career guidance and counselling in Australian schools and training institutions. This should recognise that women and men respond differently to information about occupations and provide mixed gender role models, mentors and experience with particular sensitivity to addressing gender segregation;
- That the Department of Education and Training undertake a national evaluation of all programs and initiatives associated with increasing the number of girls in STEM education;
- That the government restore and protect the budget of the Pay Equity Unit; and,
- That the government conduct a review of the UK’s recent Gender Pay Gap Reporting Initiative.
There was disagreement in the committee over the recommendations, on the grounds that the report did not fully acknowledge the current measures implemented by the government, or the progress that is already being made in workplaces throughout Australia.
AMMA facilitates the Australian Women in Resources Alliance (AWRA) – the national workforce gender diversity initiative assisting resource industry employers.