The National Government needs to take responsibility for increasing gender pay inequity, the Green Party said today.
The just released September wage data shows that the gender pay gap has worsened from 12.9 percent in September 2011 to 14.1 percent in September 2012.
"This increase in the gender pay gap is completely unacceptable and is a symptom of the National Government's disregard for women," Green Party women's spokesperson Jan Logie said.
"Inequity hurts New Zealand's economy; pay equity will help the whole country to thrive.
"Women should receive equal pay for work of equal value.
"The Government continues to ignore this discrimination against half of our population.
"This is not a few bad employers, this is a systemic problem and the Government needs to put pay equity back on the agenda
"Last term, in response to Alisdair Thompson's comments about the gender pay gap, the Government indicated they might consider legislation to address pay equity, but when the media attention withdrew so did their commitment.
"I have a Member's Bill that could be picked up by the Government and implemented to help to achieve pay equity.
"Now that we can see the results of a liassez-faire approach to the labour market, I urge the Government to pick up my Bill to ensure women are being paid fairly.
"My Bill would move us towards a solution and this is long overdue.
"My Bill would increase the amount of information publicly available on pay equity so that cases where this discrimination persists can be clearly identified. Making this information available will improve the likelihood of successful cases to be taken under the Equal Pay Act 1972.
"This Bill would move us towards achieving pay equity and I would be happy for this Government to pick it up and run with it," Ms Logie said.