Explain why inequalities in pay persist in the UK labour market and how these can be addressed with reference to legislation, social policy and other factors.
Submission Date: 12/03/2014
Word Count: 2992
In current society, the gender equalities in pay are obviously in most countries, especially in UK labour market, it is one of the highest gender pay gap in European Union (Rubery, 1998). OECD (2013) represent that GPG is measure of difference between female and male employees’ earnings, when they do the full-time or part-time jobs. The gender pay gap (GPG) remains stubborn although it has improved, the statistic demonstrate there still exist the inequalities in pay between genders in workplace. The consequences of gender pay inequalities will result in social exclusion, skill shortage, poverty, undervalue the women’s work and failure in the labor market, therefore it is imperative to take action to improve this situation. This essay will firstly illustrate the reason for persist phenomenon of gender inequalities in pay from three parts: society, individual and workplace. Although the GPG and equalities cannot be completely eliminate but in this essay several ideas will rise to address and narrow the gender pay gap based on the support of the social policy, legislation and other factors.
Reason for pay inequalities persistent in UK labor market
In the view of society, based on the UK historical and influence of primitive society, patriarchy is the main characteristic. Walby (1990) state that male dominate the series of the social practices and structures that to exploit and oppress female, which decide the women's subordinate status. According to UK pre-labor market experiences, gender have been already socialized into different roles before they are enter the labor market. Thus the gender divisions of labor are different, mostly men receive higher education and position in workplace, and the corresponding result of good pay by compare to women, women are not encouraged to have same high education or challenge works as men. Under this male dominated socialization background, this tends to relegate female to orient on more domestic works. Because the traditional view shows UK has the dual breadwinner model, male are the full time earners while women are the short part time earners, thus women will have burden of family responsibility (Lewis, 2001). This is the barrier to the women enter in the labour market and hard to get promotion, the UK studies has present existence of inequalities in pay even the male and female hold the same level of education degree, qualification or work experiences (Solberg and Teresa, 1995), Male will stay at a relatively high paying industries like the finance, utilities, technology, manufacturing and oil exploration which represented by union. By comparison, female are mostly work in service industries such as school teachers, clients, nursing or administrative which has relative low pay jobs (Blau and Kahn, 2007). Some women have influence by the traditional concept, they think their duty is to taking care family rather than making money, for men are the prime earners. Thus the pay to women absolutely lower than men, which causes the inequalities between genders.
From individual perspective, human capital (HC) theory can be the typical side to illustrate cause of gender pay inequalities. HC theory can be explained by the differences of innate abilities, education, training investment and work experiences between genders (Garavan, 2001). On one hand, it argues that in workplace female are much less productive than male due to the characteristics mention before. Jagger (1983) presents that the historical of male association with physical tasks and female's past poorer nutrition. Women are very inferiority under the society of patriarchal, and they are persuaded to show the...
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