The Equal Pay Act 1970 is an Act of the United Kingdom Parliament which prohibits any less favourable treatment between men and women in terms of pay and conditions of employment. It was passed by Parliament in the aftermath of the 1968 Ford sewing machinists strike and came into force on 29 December 1975. The term pay is interpreted in a broad sense to include, on top of wages, things like holidays, pension rights, company perks and some kinds of bonuses. The legislation has been amended on a number of recent occasions to incorporate a simplified approach under European Union law that is common to all member states.
Equal pay for women is an issue regarding pay inequality between men and women. It is often introduced into domestic politics in many first world countries as an economic problem that needs governmental intervention via regulation. The Equal Remuneration Convention requires its over 160 states parties to have equal pay for men and women.
A report commissioned by the International Trade Union Confederation in 2008 shows that, based on their survey of 63 countries, there is a significant gender pay gap of 15.6 %. Excluding Bahrain, where a positive gap of 40% is shown (due possibly to very low female participation in paid employment), the global figure is 16.5%. Women who are engaged in work in the informal economy have not been included in these figures. Overall, throughout the world, the figures for the gender pay gap range from 13% to 23%. The report found that women are often educated equally high as men, or to a higher level but "higher education of women does not necessarily lead to a smaller pay gap, however, in some cases the gap actually increases with the level of education obtained". The report also argues that this global gender pay gap is not due to lack of training or expertise on the part of women since "the pay gap in the European Union member states increases with age, years of service and education".... [continues]
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