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7th February 2018

Wage progression halts for part-time working mothers

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New research from the Institute of Fiscal Studies (IFS) has found that mothers suffer from a long-term pay penalty caused by part-time working. The IFS found that by the time their first child reached the age of 20, women earned 30% less per hour than similarly educated men. 

enei Chief Executive Denise Keating commented:

“The motherhood penalty has long been an issue that employers and Government have failed to address for both full-time and part-time working mothers. There are a number of contributory factors for this part of the pay gap. An assumption by line managers that working mothers don’t want additional responsibility on top of their childcare commitments, benevolent sexism, where colleagues and managers try to look after working mothers by giving them easy tasks, and a belief that working mothers will prioritise their children over their career (although the same belief is rarely applied to working fathers), all contribute to working mothers being passed over for pay-rises and promotion.

“The UK is also still too focused on hours worked as a measure of performance, rather than actual outputs. Part-time and flexible working is often seen as a woman’s working pattern, discouraging men from adopting similar working styles. Recent research from the recruitment consultancy Feel found that 54% of mothers were forced to leave or change jobs due to a lack of flexibility. Employers who support flexibly working mothers rather than seeing them as a burden will clearly reduce the amount of female talent they are losing which can only have a positive impact on their published Gender Pay Gap figures and increase employee happiness.”

Read People Management's article here for more information.