The government’s failure to act on recommendations will mean the continuation of the gender pay gap for more than a generation, according to a group of MPs.
The Women and Equalities Committee criticised the government’s “deeply disappointing” response to the proposals put forward in its report last March that aimed to eradicate the gender pay gap.
The report made 17 recommendations to help solve the issue that included key areas such as tackling underpaid part-time work and greater flexible working; shared parental leave; supporting women back in to the workplace and addressing low wages in traditionally female dominated professions.
The Committee said that while the government had highlighted the need to close the gender pay gap, by overlooking the evidence in the report it was ensuring continuation of the problem.
The government said that the existing policies on shared parental leave, flexible working, and supporting women back into work are already adequate.
Committee Chair Maria Miller said: “The Government says there is no place for a gender pay gap in modern Britain and has restated its pledge to end the pay gap within a generation. But without effectively tackling the key issues of flexible working, sharing unpaid caring responsibilities, and supporting women aged over 40 back into the workforce, the gender pay gap will not be eliminated.
“We made practical, evidence-based recommendations to address these issues. They were widely supported by a range of stakeholders including businesses, academics, and unions. It is deeply disappointing that our recommendations have not been taken on board by Government.
“My Committee will continue to pursue urgent action to reduce the gender pay gap – starting by questioning the Secretary of State for Women and Equalities on this inadequate response to our recommendations.”