Did that just happen? Equal Pay Day..

I just saw the fucking weirdest thing happen on the fucking appalling 7pm Project. The 7pm Project is a pathetic current affairsish type TV show. It’s supposed to be a ‘fresh take’ on today’s news – but it’s really just the same old shite frothing from the mouths of three ‘hip’, 35ish,  middle class, morons. Content varies, from segments of the days ‘top’ news stories (think commercial TV type news stories) through to cross-promotion of other appalling channel 10 programs, in the guise of special guests.

So there was a story coming up, about the pay gap between men and women and how it’s getting wider. The hosts and guest were discussing why that might be; Charlie Pickering was anxious to point out that men weren’t sitting around in a room going “we are going to pay women less” and Carrie Bickmore wondered if it was because women weren’t very good at negotiating.

Women earn on average $200p/w less than men, and to make up for this gap, would have to work 63 days a year extra, to catch up. They had a guest on to ask why and how the gap exists. Dr Marian Baird is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Economics and Business at the University of Sydney and is an expert in the field of women, work and family.

So they cross to Dr Marion Baird and asked why the pay gap exists. She explained that there are a variety of reasons; ‘women’s’ work being traditionally undervalued and paid accordingly, structural inequities, e.t.c. She also said that she thought the comment Charlie Pickering made earlier about men “sitting around in boardrooms saying ‘we’re going to pay women less’” was actually more true than not, in the sense that for the last 10 years we’ve had enterprise bargaining which allowed exactly that, to happen.

They asked her what could be done to decrease the gap and she said that negotiating was not the answer, but mentioned the importance of transparency in wages, so that everyone knows what everyone else is getting, including bonuses and commissions. In the middle of her sentence, explaining how to decrease the wage gap, Charlie Pickering cuts in and goes “Thankyou very much Marian Baird” and crossed straight into another segment. It was really fucking strange that in discussing something vitally important to improve women’s lives they interrupt and cut to something else.

The segment was under 5 minutes.

The entire show was interspersed with utterly inane segments from Miss world.

This year Equal Pay Day falls on Sept 1st – which is 63 days after the end of the financial year. 63 days is the number of extra days a woman would have to work per year to equal mans wage. Last year it was 58.




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