Revealed: How big is the gender pay gap in the public sector in North Somerset?

PUBLISHED: 12:00 06 April 2018

There is a gender pay gap in the public sector in North Somerset.

There is a gender pay gap in the public sector in North Somerset.

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Women working in the public sector in North Somerset can on average earn as little as 72p for every pound men receive.

All employers with more than 250 staff are required by the Government to publish their gender pay gap figures.

The results show across the police, fire service, NHS and council, women are earning less, suggesting men are more likely to be filling the top-paid roles.

Although men make up 27 per cent of North Somerset Council’s workforce, they form 40 per cent of the authority’s highest earners.

On average, women are paid 13.7 per cent less than men, equivalent to 86p for every £1 men earn.

The council’s report says: “We are confident this gap is not as a result of paying men and women differently for the same or equivalent work, rather it is as a result of the roles in which men and women work within the council and the salaries these roles attract.”

It says services such as rubbish collections, which traditionally employ more men, have been outsourced to private contractors, but care services, which typically employ more women, are still covered by the council.

A spokesman for North Somerset Unison said: “The council’s workforce is 73 per cent female yet a higher percentage of men are in the top jobs at the council. It would be nice to see the council recruit women for the newly vacant chief executive and director of development and environment posts.”

Weston Area Health NHS Trust, which runs the hospital, says women are paid 28 per cent less an hour than men, which works out as 72p for every £1.

Around 7.9 per cent of male medical staff received a financial bonus, compared to 1.3 per cent of female medical staff – and on average, the bonus payment is £5,084 less for women.

The trust has created a working group to carry out further investigations.

At Avon and Somerset Constabulary, there is a 12.6 per cent pay gap. But while a similar proportion of male and female staff have received bonus payments, those bonuses for men are 34.1 per cent more.

The force says being aware of the issue will help it tackle it and it expects to reduce or remove the bonus gap in future.

Avon Fire and Rescue Service reported a 3.9 per cent pay gap.

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