WOMENS ADVOCATE: Ipswich MP Jennifer Howard has drawn attention to the widening gender pay gap and is seeking solutions.
WOMENS ADVOCATE: Ipswich MP Jennifer Howard has drawn attention to the widening gender pay gap and is seeking solutions. Rob Williams

Gender pay gap widens with women way behind in Qld

A REPORT on the gender pay gap is in and it confirms that no progress has been made on equal pay for women in 20 years.

In fact, the gap has widened.

Ipswich MP Jennifer Howard said it was "astounding that the gender gap is higher now than it was 20 years ago" in the wake of the Department of Communities releasing The Queensland Women report for 2015.

Ms Howard said the report was "a wake-up call for all Ipswichians and all Queenslanders".

"In 1995 the gender pay gap was 15.2% and it is now 18%," Ms Howard said.

"Generally, Queensland males earn more than Queensland females with the same level of qualifications."

The report shows that on average a female with the same bachelor qualifications as a male gets about 64.4% of a male wage.

A male who has finished Year 12 and gone out into the workforce will receive on average $911.40 and a female will receive $566.

"The figures are concerning because in a nutshell we are getting paid less and retiring with far less super," Ms Howard said.

"The most pronounced difference in average weekly earnings for males and females with the same level of qualifications was for those workers with a certificate three or four where the females average weekly earnings were only 54% of those of males."

Ms Howard said that the report brought together "all the available statistics to provide a clear snapshot of the issues facing Queensland women and girls across a range of measures including education, health, safety, finances and also gender equality.

It also revealed women and girls in Queensland were more than four times as likely as males to be sexually assaulted by a stranger.

Queensland men accounted for 86.3% of offenders for the breach of domestic violence order offences in the 2014-15 period.

To address the issues Ms Howard said the government had "launched a state wide consultation to develop a new whole of government women's strategy to look at what can be done to tackle gender inequality and better support women and girls in Queensland".

"The government is calling for women to put their views forward on the women's strategy to get the feedback," she said.

Women and girls can submit their views by contacting ipswich@parliament.qld.gov.au



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