Issue date
25 Oct 2018

Commenting on the latest annual pay statistics published today (Thursday) by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) – showing that the gender pay gap for median earnings has fallen by 0.5 percentage points to 17.9% in 2018 (from 18.4% in 2017) – TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said:

“Working women won’t be celebrating this negligible decrease in the gender pay gap. At this rate, another generation of women will spend their whole working lives waiting to be paid the same as men.

“The government needs to crank up the pressure on employers. Companies shouldn't just be made to publish their gender pay gaps, they should be legally required to explain how they’ll close them.

"And bosses who flout the law should be fined."

ENDS

Notes to editors:

  • Today’s ASHE figures also show that the full-time gender pay gap has reduced by 0.5 percentage point to 8.6%. The headline figure is much wider than the full-time employee pay gap because it includes the 5.3 million female employees who work part-time and are more likely to be low-paid. On average women who work part-time earn £5.34 less per hour than full-time men.
  • The part-time pay gap, which favours women, is now -4.4% (down from -5.3% in 2017)
  • Since 2011 the gender pay gap has fallen by an average of just 0.3 percentage points a year. At this rate it will take around 55 years (until 2073) to achieve pay parity between men and women.
  • The Trades Union Congress (TUC) exists to make the working world a better place for everyone. We bring together more than 5.6 million working people who make up our 50 member unions. We support unions to grow and thrive, and we stand up for everyone who works for a living.