Today is Equal Pay Day

Today is Equal Pay Day

Office for Women
Wednesday, 28 August 2019

Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet

Today is Equal Pay Day—a date that changes every year, depending on the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ (ABS) August release of Gender Pay Gap figures.

The date marks the 59 additional days from the end of the previous financial year that women must work, on average, to earn the same amount as men earned that year.

The ABS figures show the national gender pay gap has fallen to a new record low of 14.0 per cent. This is great news for Australian women, but there is more to be done to close the gap.

All industries continue to have a gender pay gap in favour of men. By industry, the lowest pay gap (4.6 per cent) is in Retail Trade, while the highest (25.6 per cent) is in Financial and Insurance Services. The difference between full-time average weekly earnings of men and women is $241.50.

The national theme for Equal Pay Day 2019, #TheGapMatters, highlights the extent of the barriers women face in the workforce. Women’s full potential in the workforce is not being realised and this affects individuals, families and the Australian economy. The gender pay gap is a compounding economic issue that results in women retiring with around 40% less superannuation than men.

The Australian Government’s Women’s Economic Security Statement, launched in 2018, shines a light on the barriers that might limit women in building their financial security and focuses on practical measures to effect positive change.

The $151.4 million package of initiatives and funding targets key areas that promote greater choice for Australian women, to help to boost their education and skills; increase their financial literacy and empowerment; and help them get a job or return to work.

It is also helping them to establish and grow their businesses; work with the private sector to close the flexibility gap and gender pay gap; and importantly, help improve their economic recovery following life changing events, such as separation or domestic violence.