Belfast Telegraph

Labour vows to close pay gap which sees women earn £60,000 less than men

Women in Scotland face earning £60,000 less in their lifetime than men because of the gender pay gap, new analysis has shown.

Scottish Labour leader Kezia Dugdale said the gap is "shameful" and vowed her party has plans to close it.

Labour's analysis of figures from the Office for National Statistics shows in every age group, women earn less than men on average in Scotland, which builds up to a median of £60,000 less over a woman's working life.

Plans to close the gender pay gap in the Labour manifesto include introducing a £10 real living wage, forcing businesses to publish pay ratios and creating a civil enforcement system to ensure compliance with gender pay auditing.

Ms Dugdale said: "It is shameful that under the SNP and the Tories women in Scotland could earn £60,000 less than men on average well into their careers.

"Closing the gender pay gap isn't just a question of fairness - it is essential for our economy.

"There is so much more to do to shatter the glass ceiling for women. Only Labour will take the radical steps to close the gap for good, like a real living wage and forcing companies to publish pay ratios.

"If a company thinks a woman is worth a lower wage than a man, then under Labour we'll force them to admit it.

"This election is a choice between Scottish Labour MPs who will fight to close the gender pay gap, or SNP MPs who will fight for a second independence referendum that Scotland doesn't need or want."

Kirsty Blackman, the SNP candidate for Aberdeen North, said: "The SNP Government has done more than any other to promote gender equality in the workplace and jobs market, with female employment being amongst the highest in Europe.

"On the other hand, Labour utterly failed over many decades to do enough on this when they had the chance."