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Wednesday, 14 November 2018
Page: 8155


Senator WATERS (Queensland) (15:54): I wish to inform the chamber that Senator Cameron will also be sponsoring the motion. I seek leave to amend general business notice of motion No. 1202, standing in my name and the name of Senator Cameron, relating to the gender pay gap. I understand the amendments have been circulated in the chamber.

Leave granted.

Senator WATERS: I, and also on behalf of Senator Cameron, move the motion as amended:

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

   (i) the Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) annual data, released on 13 November 2018, shows that the gender pay gap is still unacceptably high at 16.2%,

   (ii) men earn $25,717, or 21.3%, more than women each year on average, in full-time work across all jobs, including overtime and bonuses,

   (iii) financial and insurance services remains the industry with the highest total remuneration gender pay gap at 30.3%,

   (iv) construction is the industry with the second-highest gender pay gap at 29.4%,

   (v) the female-dominated industry of health care and social assistance saw a second annual increase in its gender pay gap to 16.1%,

   (vi) more than half of employers do not analyse their pay data for gender pay gaps,

   (vii) 41.5% of employers who did a pay gap analysis took no action to address it,

   (viii) only 17.9% of organisations that conducted a gender pay gap analysis are actually reporting pay equity metrics up to the boards and governing bodies,

   (ix) when it comes to paid parental leave, women account for 94.9% of all primary carer's leave utilised, with men accounting for only 5.1%, and

   (x) less than 2 in 100 companies have set targets for men's engagement in flexible work; and

(b) calls on the Federal Government to:

   (i) increase the resourcing for WGEA, strengthen its powers, and require large employers to publicly report their gender pay gap, and

   (ii) prohibit the use of pay gag clauses in private employment contracts, which clauses disguise the gender pay gap in the private sector.