Entries in Mythbusters: Discrimination (12)


The Workplace Gender Equality Agency once again 'finds' wage discrimination without evidence

The Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) has once again appeared to 'find' wage discrimination without supporting evidence. We have covered this issue previously here.

Thankfully this time around Graduate Careers Australia, the research body that each year compiles statistics on the starting salaries of university graduates, has spoken up about the distortion of its research by the WGEA (see SMH story below).

The myth that women are paid less than men for the same work is so entrenched in our culture that we regularly have to challenge media reports that promote it.

A recent example is Stephanie Peatling's article titled "Equality? The 64-day question" in the Sun Herald on September 2nd 2012. In this article she incorrectly claimed that, "On average, men earn 17.5 per cent more than women in comparable jobs."

After a letter to the editor went unpublished we complained to the Australian Press Council which resulted in a prominent correction (page 2) being published in the October 28th edition of the paper and on the Sun Herald website.

Click to read more ...


ABS Releases Gender Indicators and Ignores Male Disadvantage

Today the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), Australia's so-called impartial statistical body released its Gender Indicators report: "a summary of gender specific data in six domains representing Economic security, Education, Health, Work and family balance, Safety and justice, and Democracy, governance and citizenship".

The ABS produced a media release about the publication. This release could have noted that:

  • Across the board males fare much worse than females in the education system - most notably being 24% less likely to be enrolled in a bachelor degree or above
  • Across the board males fare much worse than females in the health arena - most notably suffering death rates from cancer, heart disease, suicide, motor vehicle accidents and drug abuse between 1.6 and 3.4 times higher
  • Males are 12% more likely than females to feel their work and family responsibilities are rarely/ never in balance
  • Males are almost twice as likely as females to have experienced violence during the last 12 months and one third more likely to be a victim of physical or threatened physical assault.

However, these facts were conveniently ignored in favour of a media release titled "Busy mums want more paid work," citing the rate of underemployment being twice as high for women (8%) than for men (4%). Sadly it seems that the lace curtain extends all the way into our country's top statistical body.


Man gets equal blog (UK)

I have long believed that men and boys need a national champion to advocate for their needs and shine a light on the inequalities that they experience. Why? Because if you really care about equality – whatever that means to you personally – then surely you will want to know where inequality exists and be reassured that something is being done to tackle that inequality. Yet over the years of working with various issues relating to men and boys I have found time and time again that the many inequalities that men and boys experience – in health, education, housing, criminal justice, social justice and so – are all too often hidden, denied or simply ignored – often by the very people who claim to be the champions of equality. Which is why I believe men and boys need their own distinct and positive voice, highlighting the inequalities the experience and the solutions that would help tackle those inequalities and make the world a much better place for every man, woman, girl and boy.


Gail Kelly, Westpac CEO, busts the pay gap myth [YouTube]

On ABC TV's Q & A program on 7th March 2011, Mark Pannowitz, a Westpac employee, asked the following question of his CEO Gail Kelly. "Currently there is a 27 per cent pay difference between males and females in the finance sector. How is Westpac, planning to address this issue?". Gail's response - that despite equal pay for equal work being completely entrenched at Wespac, there is still a gender pay gap - shows that the pay gap is caused by the work/life choices of male and female employees, not any mythical male conspiracy to pay women less for the same work.

Click to read more ...


Women quotas are 'demeaning', says Latvian ex-president (Europe)

The EU commission's idea of imposing quotas on women in businesses is based on the "demeaning" principle that no woman can make it on her own merits, says former Latvian president Vaira Vike-Freiberga. "What does it actually mean to have quotas? It's to say we don't have enough competent or interested women to do a certain job," Ms Vike-Freiberga told the EUobserver on Tuesday (8 March) on the margins of a gender equality workshop organised by the Norwegian funding scheme for eastern European countries - EEA/Norway Grants.