UN: UN launches network to end global gender pay gap

New York, US (PANA) - With women being paid an average of 23 per cent less than men, the UN has launched a high-profile network to call for equal pay for work of equal value.

The launch of the network known as 'Platform of Champions', is part of a broader UN International Labour Organization (ILO) and UN Women Global Equal Pay Coalition and it coincided with the opening of the 61st UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW).

The CSW is an inter-governmental forum on women's rights and gender equality.

The theme this year is on women's economic empowerment in the changing world of work.

Academy Award-winning American actress Ms. Patricia Arquette and two-time Olympic gold medalist and football superstar Ms. Abby Wambach, led the call at the launch of the Equal Pay Platform of Champions held at UN General Assembly in New York.

UN Women Executive Director, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, said: "The gender pay gap reflects the unjustifiably diminished position of many women in society and helps to keep them there."

Pointing to the big names participating in the Platform – which in addition to Ms. Arquette and Ms. Wambach include leaders from the trade unions, civil society, government, private sector, film makers, Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka said she hopes their advocacy will make women's "flagrant inequality a think of the past."

She noted that the goal of the Platform is to call for increased support by proactively reaching out to decision and policy makers.

She said that, according to global figures, women make only 77 cents for every dollar that men earn for the same position.

"Over time, the income inequality results in more women retiring into poverty," the UN Women chief added.

On his part, ILO Director-General Guy Ryder, stated: "The quest for women's economic empowerment will be lost or won in the world of work."

He noted the importance of whether and how women enter the work place and in what types of jobs.

"One of the main reasons for the gender gap is that women tend to be concentrated in different jobs than men, for example in teaching or health care, which tend to be underpaid.

"There are also differences for men and women who are in the same line of work," he said.

Also speaking, Ms. Wambach said that, "I am angry because I have to worry about paying my bills, even though I won more World Cups than Cristiano Ronaldo", referring to the Portuguese football player.

On her part, Ms. Arquette said that "women sometimes become invisible if they are not seen beyond the value of the men they are with."

PANA reports that UN Women also kicked off its #StopTheRobbery campaign to mobilize ordinary people and raise awareness about the gender pay gap.
-0- PANA AA 14March2017

14 march 2017 20:03:21

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