The 'gender pay gap' is actually a choice gap, says Julia Hartley-Brewer

Gender 'pay penalty': 'Employers need to be more aware', says Resolution Foundation

A study has found that women in their thirties still take a 'pay penalty' after they become mothers

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Julia Hartley-Brewer has said that, instead of talking about a gender pay gap, we should be talking about a "choice gap."

Our presenter made the comments during an interview with Conor D'Arcy of the Resolution Foundation, the thinktank which has published a new study citing widespread gender wage disparity.

Julia suggested much of the supposed disparity is due to the fact that men study different courses at university, which tend to yield more lucrative jobs after graduation.

Our presenter also cited new statistics suggesting that women in their 20s actually outearn men when they have the same job with the same degree, and said D'Arcy was not "comparing apples with apples".

However D'Arcy said that, while the gender pay disparity is marginal when people leave school, the Resolution Foundation study is "flagging up there’s longer-term bad news."

He added: "The really key point is we focused on different generations. There has been a narrowing of the pay gap, but as we move into the 30s and 40s, it rises again.

"One of the challenges women have flagged up is the lack of quality part-time jobs. The key point is you cut back and are able to build up the career again.

“It’s just having the conversation, employers being more aware." 

Listen above.