New bill to 'give teeth' to Equal Pay Act

A new bill targeting unequal pay would "give teeth" to current employment laws by improving the ability to test for gender-based discrimination, Green MP Catherine Delahunty says.

Ms Delahunty today released a member's bill that would amend the Equal Pay Act to require employers to record the gender of their employees along with current reporting requirements.

"One way to close the gender pay gap is to make sure the existing Equal Pay Act is being enforced," Ms Delahunty said.

"My bill gives teeth to the Equal Pay Act and makes it relevant in the 21st century."

The proposed changes meant workers and unions would be able to request information on pay levels by gender in their workplaces to assess whether the Equal Pay Act was being applied.

Ms Delahunty said the law surrounding gender equality needed a much bigger overhaul, but ensuring the current laws were being applied correctly was a first step.

The bill was welcomed by unions, who said it was an important move toward making the pay gap visible.

Paul Goulter, the national secretary of education sector union NZEI, said the changes would give low-paid women welcome ammunition in the fight for equity.

"It is good to see someone moving forward on the issue," he said.

"Giving women access to gender pay details in their workplaces will make it hard for the Government and employers to ignore the fact that the gender pay gap is alive and well and that thousands of women are being denied the pay and opportunities they deserve."

Service and Food Workers Union president Barbara Wyeth said the bill was part of a jigsaw of actions urgently needed.

"The pay gap between men and women is our members' daily reality," she said.

"There is an invisible army of women out there, many of whom are the main income earners or only income earners in their families, struggling to feed those families on as little as $13 an hour."

1 · Got a question about this story? Leave it in Comments & Questions below.

This article is tagged with the following keywords. Find out more about MyNBR Tags

1 Comment & Question

Commenter icon key: Subscriber Verified

What about the non-Europeans? How's their pay stake up... or recent immigrants ... more to this than meets the eye!!

  • 0
  • 0

Post New comment or question

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

NZ Market Snapshot


Sym Price Change
USD 0.7282 -0.0001 -0.01%
AUD 0.9496 0.0030 0.32%
EUR 0.6481 -0.0008 -0.12%
GBP 0.5610 0.0025 0.45%
HKD 5.6459 0.0007 0.01%
JPY 73.9540 0.4370 0.59%


Commodity Price Change Time
Gold Index 1319.6 -1.410 2016-09-29T00:
Oil Brent 49.8 0.570 2016-09-29T00:
Oil Nymex 47.8 0.780 2016-09-29T00:
Silver Index 19.2 0.070 2016-09-29T00:


Symbol Open High Last %
NZX 50 7343.4 7361.1 7343.4 0.24%
NASDAQ 5311.3 5317.0 5318.5 -0.93%
DAX 10240.7 10372.3 10405.5 -0.53%
DJI 18322.9 18366.2 18143.5 0.00%
FTSE 6919.4 6919.4 6919.4 -0.56%
HKSE 23435.3 23484.4 23739.5 -1.86%
NI225 16474.5 16497.5 16693.7 -1.46%
ASX 5471.3 5471.3 5471.3 -0.65%