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The gender pay gap still exists | © Tamystika/Pixabay
The gender pay gap still exists | © Tamystika/Pixabay
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Study Says French Women Are Technically Working 'For Free' Until End of Year

Picture of Sylvia Edwards Davis
Writer
Updated: 7 November 2017
Gender equality is going backwards, at least where the pay gap is concerned, according to a report on French women released on feminist platform Les Glorieuses. This year, the time that women are technically working ‘for free’ has increased yet another notch.

Mind the gap

Last year, on November 7, 2016, there were demonstrations all over France to raise awareness of the gender pay gap. Based on data released by Eurostat that showed that in 2015 the hourly wage for women was almost 16% lower than for men, the equivalent was worked out and women are working for free from November 7 until the end of the year. In 2017, the data was updated to the number of working days on the calendar, finding that women had started working ‘for free’ four days earlier, on November 3 at 11:44am.

The feminist collective launched a campaign under the hashtag #3novembre11h44 to keep the issue in the forefront of the public consciousness. A study carried out by Les Glorieuses assigned the following main reasons at the root of wage inequalities: the private sector exerting influences on the public sector; the gender distribution in higher education; professions and positions of responsibility; internalisation of stereotypes; and inequalities in wage negotiations.

And now what?

While the data refers to the European Union, the gender gap is not limited to the member countries, and the profession with the largest differences in hourly earnings (23% lower earnings for women than for men) were managers.

Whatever their job title, however, Les Glorieuses urges women to promote equal pay at whatever level possible: the individual, the company, and at the community level to influence public policy.