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Employment: Equality

Question for Women and Equalities

UIN HL3223, tabled on 21 April 2020

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to ensure transparent and consistent workforce data reporting to support (1) women, (2) BAME, (3) disabled, and (4) LGBTQ+, graduates to realise their potential and, on merit, reach the top of their professions.

Answered on

5 May 2020

Pay gaps are caused by a range of factors. To address them, we must ensure that everybody has equal access to opportunities.

In 2017, we introduced mandatory gender pay gap reporting for large employers, providing an unprecedented level of transparency. The gender pay gap is currently at a record low of 17.3%. However, the gap for full-time employees increased slightly to 8.9%. To address the drivers of the gap, we’ve set out a package of commitments aiming to empower women from school right through to retirement.

The Government ran a consultation from October 2018 to January 2019 on Ethnicity Pay Reporting and received over 300 detailed responses. The Government met with businesses and representative organisations to understand the barriers towards reporting and what information could be published to allow for meaningful action to be taken. We have also run voluntary methodology testing with a broad range of businesses to better understand the complexities outlined in the consultation using real payroll data and will share next steps in due course.

Calculation and monitoring of disability and LGBT pay gaps raises significant issues of self-reporting and data accuracy and this data is not widely collected by employers. Although we have no plans for data collection of pay for these characteristics, we want to achieve practical changes for disabled people, which remove barriers and increase opportunity. The Government will publish an ambitious ‘National Strategy for Disabled People’. We will ensure that the lived experience of disabled people is at the heart of the new National Strategy and focus on the issues that disabled people say affect them the most.

The 108,000 respondents to the National LGBT Survey told us that their priority in the workplace is to tackle discrimination. So the Government Equalities Office is exploring the creation of a package of measures to tackle LGBT workplace discrimination. LGBT people should be able to be themselves in the workplace, so that they can do their best work and achieve their full potential.

Diverse workforces make good business sense. For example, organisations in the top 25% for gender diversity on their executive teams are 21% more likely to have profits above their industry average, and organisations where over 20% of managers are women have been associated with higher performance than organisations with less than 15% representation of women.

Answered by

Women and Equalities