With a report out today, showing senior female managers earn $100 000 less per year than male counterparts, the Greens are urging the other parties to support their Bill for pay transparency.
Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens Deputy Leader and spokesperson for women, said:
"In the private sector, it's common practice for contracts to include gag clauses that prevent workers from discussing their pay with one another.
"Secret pay negotiations happen in high-paid roles, where these stark pay gaps are being revealed, and in lower paid positions, where the pay gap hurts women trying to make ends meet.
"When pay is set in secret deals and employees aren't allowed to discuss the outcome women lose out.
"The gender pay gap is much smaller in the public sector at 12.2 per cent, where workers are allowed to talk about their pay, compared 21.3 per cent in the private sector, where these gag clauses exist.
"My Bill would give workers the power to discuss their pay with their colleagues if they wish to, without fear of breaching the gag clauses often included in contracts.
"This is one practical step we can take toward ending the gender pay gap, which has hovered between 15 and 19 per cent for years.
"It should always be your choice whether to discuss your pay, and some people will still prefer to keep their pay private.
"All the current government has done on the gender pay gap is water down requirements for big businesses to report about their pay gaps.
"There's much more work we need to do to achieve financial equality, including preventing the Turnbull Liberal Government's attacks on paid parental leave," Senator Waters said.
More information about the Greens bill here: http://larissa-waters.greensmps.org.au/content/blog/fixing-gender-pay-gap-ending-pay-gag-clauses