SMEs may soon be audited as part of a new pay equity push to find out how women stack up against men when it comes to pay.
A Parliamentary inquiry into the issue of pay equity has recommended the establishment of a special Pay Equity Unit within the Government’s Fair Work Australia agency.
The committee put forward 63 recommendations in total, including a recommendation to make businesses with over 100 people report every two years on the “implementation of a diversity plan to increase pay equity”. The committee also wants to see the Federal Government make pay equity a clear objective of the new modern awards that are due to come into effect on 1 January 2010.
However, Jaye Radisich, chief executive of the Council of Small Business Organisations of Australia (COSBOA) believes that all this will do is place a greater administrative burden on small businesses.
“The immediate reaction I have to the proposal is that it is yet more red tape and more burden for small businesses,” she said. “As a general principle, more monitoring of the gender pay gap doesn’t solve the problem.”
Instead, she believes more investment needs to be made in helping businesses understand the needs of their female employees and then integrating those needs with the needs of the business.
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