7 February 2023

The gender pay gap: The Cost of Being a Woman at Work – CSPA gives evidence

Women and Work APPG have launched their 2023 annual report: The Cost of Being a Woman at Work with evidence from the Civil Service Pensioners’ Alliance.

The report which gathers recommendations from the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) meetings held in 2022, looks at measures that would improve the lives of working women at this challenging economic time. 

Last year, CSPA’s Pensions Official Christine Haswell gave oral evidence at the House of Commons around the Gender pension gap and our civil service widows campaign, “Pensions for Life”.

Christine welcomes publication of the report: “The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) report on Women and Work flags up many of the challenges facing women in the workplace. A concern to many CSPA members is the gender pension gap and the inequity of the civil service rules on widow’s pensions ceasing on remarriage.

The APPG has parliamentarians from all parties and both House of Commons and Lords so the recommendations can be carried out outside the party divisions whoever, is in government. We are delighted at the unequivocal support for our Pensions for Life campaign. From the evidence we have provided, we want to see resolutions established and for the recommendations to be put into action.”

Recommendations of note provided by the report include:
  • The Government should introduce mandatory gender and ethnicity pay gap reporting for all companies of 100+ employees, as well as the development of mandatory follow-up action plans to address the gap if present
  • The Government should work with employers to discourage salary history questions during recruitment, as well as discouraging questions on gaps in employment history, as those tend to harm women who have taken career breaks for childcare purposes
  • The Government should work with the Women’s Health Ambassador to ensure basic needs like HRTs to be granted and work across departments to introduce menopause as a protected characteristic
  • The Government should encourage employers to produce plans for accommodating menopausal employees, including signposting of resources and guidance for all affected
  • The Government should increase statutory maternity pay to match the living wage to harness female talent – as women are currently driven out of the workforce by childcare costs
  • The DWP should introduce changes to the pension system, including ensuring pension contributions are considered through divorce proceedings, applying auto-enrolment to workers from age 18 (rather than age 22) and employers’ contributions throughout parental leave

You can read the full report here.

The Women and Work APPG is chaired by Jess Phillips MP (Labour) and Flick Drummond MP (Conservative).

Please see below on how you can amplify the findings to help women in later life.

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