Issue date

The majority of women working part-time in Flintshire earn less than the living wage – the highest proportion in Wales and the ninth highest in Britain – according to research published today (Thursday) by Wales TUC.

Today (28 August, which marks two-thirds of the way through 2014) is effectively the last day this year that women working part-time get paid. This is because they earn just 66p for every pound earned by men working full-time (which is a pay gap of 34.2 per cent). One of the main reasons for this huge gender pay divide is the large concentration of women doing low-paid, part-time work, says the TUC.

Across the UK, around two in five part-time jobs pay less than the living wage. But Wales TUC analysis of official figures from the House of Commons Library shows that in Flintshire three in five women (60 per cent) working part-time are paid below the living wage.

Blaenau Gwent (59 per cent) and Conwy (53 per cent) are the next worst affected areas in Wales. In both local authority areas the majority of women working part-time earn less than the living wage, which currently stands at £7.65 an hour.

With women accounting for almost three-quarters of Britain’s six-million strong part-time workforce, the lack of skilled, decently-paid, part-time jobs affects women’s pay and their career prospects far more than it does men, says the TUC.

The TUC would like to see more employers paying the living wage. This would help tackle the growing scourge of in-work poverty and make big inroads into closing what it sees as the scandalous 34 per cent part-time gender pay gap.

The TUC believes that local authorities should lead by example by becoming living wage employers themselves. At local, devolved and UK government levels, employers can boost take-up of the living wage by encouraging private companies that win public contracts to pay a living wage to their staff.

The TUC also wants to see more jobs advertised on a part-time basis, ending the requirement that women have to be in post for six months before they have the right to request flexible working. Many women feel unable to ask about the possibility of a shorter working week during a job interview for fear it could adversely affect their chances of success, says the TUC.

Wales TUC National Officer Julie Cook said:

“In-work poverty has grown so dramatically that these workers now outnumber those in poverty without work in Wales. It remains a gross injustice that it is often women who bear the brunt of low pay.

“The living wage was created so that work can provide staff with a basic standard of living. But in places like Flintshire and Blaenau Gwent, most women working part-time are way off earning this.

“Women would gain most from a greater take-up of the living wage by employers. Councils and other public bodies can lead the way by becoming living wage employers themselves. But they also need to work with local employers and unions to use the living wage as part of a fair employment offer to tackle in-work poverty throughout Wales.”


Top five living wage blackspots for women working part-time in Wales

Local authority area

Percentage paid less than the living wage





Blaenau Gwent









Isle of Anglesey


Top10 GB living wage brightspots (men and women)

Local authority area

Region / Nation

Percentage of people paid less than the living wage



East of England




East of England




South East



Brighton and Hove

South East




South East


- The TUC analysis does not include men working part-time as figures are not available for most local authority areas. This is because there are too few men working part-time to have statistically significant figures by local area. Figures for women working part-time are available for 341 of the UK’s 406 local authority areas.

- A breakdown of the number of people paid below the living wage by local authority area and parliamentary constituency is available at

- The TUC analysis of the availability of part-time work in the best and worst paid occupations is available at

- Equal Pay Day for part-time workers is based on the fact women working part-time earn 34.2 per cent less per hour than men (based on mean hourly earnings excluding overtime). This means women effectively stop being paid on the 204th day of the year – 28 August. The full-time gender pay gap is 15.7 per cent. This means that Equal Pay Day for women working full-time is Tuesday 4 November this year. Further analysis from the TUC and the Fawcett Society will be published around this anniversary.

- All TUC press releases can be found at

- Follow Wales TUC on Twitter: @walestuc