Women’s Pay and Poverty Provisional Data from the ONS 2012 Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings Jackie Longworth Fair Play South West
Outline • In work poverty and poverty pay • Key points about ASHE data • Gender pay gaps • Poverty: Results for the South West • Geographical variations • Changes since 2009 • Some thoughts on causes – what women say • Conclusions
In work Poverty • More than 50% of children in poverty live in households with at least one wage earner • Joseph Rowntree Foundation and others • “Poverty” based on income = pay + Benefits • low pay is subsidised by benefits • but benefits are not usually enough to lift someone out of poverty • “Poverty” based on household income • so hides the poverty of women in households where income is not distributed evenly • This analysis looks only at individual pay in the context of individual poverty
Official “Poverty” Income Threshold • Relative Poverty Threshold • Defined as a household income of 60% of the medianhousehold income • The benefits cap will be set at the average net earned income of working households • £350 per week for single adult, no children • £500 per week for couple or lone parent with children • Deduced value of defined relative poverty threshold • £210 per week for single adult, no children • £300 per week for couple or lone parent with children
Minimum Income Standard and Living Wage • MIS Established in 2008 by Joseph Rowntree Foundation • Varies by family type, for example • £474 per week for couple with one child (cf official poverty £300) • £461 per week for lone parent with two children (cf 300) • £243 per week for single pensioner (cf £210) • Living Wage of £7.45 per hourwould mean: • £400 per week in a household with one full time (37.5 hours) and one part time (16 hours) earner • £223.5 per week for “full time” single earner (30 hours a week) • £279.4 per week for 37.5 hours a week • The “living wage” is a good proxy for poverty pay!
Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings • Hours and earnings data from employers • Based on 1% survey of jobs in PAYE records • Corrected for bias in types of respondent • Does not include self-employed • Refers to a specified “window” of time • Supplemented by Labour Force Survey • Based on a person’s recollection • May be filled in by a proxy • Gives useful information about personal characteristics • Very time consuming to analyse!
Gender Pay Gap (s) • Confusion of definition! • Mean = difference between average pay of women and men • Median = difference between the pay of 50% of men compared with 50% of women • Confusion of working pattern! • Full time women compared with full time men • Part time women compared with part time men • Part time women compared with full time men • All women compared with all men • Current government is headlining full time median hourly pay, (excluding overtime) - very misleading • Few working men are part time, (15% in the SW in 2012) • Many working women are part time, (49% in the SW in 2012)
2012 hourly gender pay gaps, median • Full time women to full time men • Government’s head line gap (UK) • 9.6% • Gap from my analysis of full time ONS data is • 11% England, • 13% SW • All employees (full and part time) • 21% England • 19% SW • Part time women to full time men • 40% England • 34% SW
In the SW, 28% of women and 16% of men earn less than the Living Wage per hour
In the SW, 47% of Womenand 19% of Men earn less than the Living Wage per week
The proportion of women earning less than the living wage per week is higher in the SW than across England (47% cf 42%)
Comparisons 2009 to 2012 – South West • Number of employees • Women up 2%, men up 5% • Number of part time employees • Women up 7%, • Median hourly pay • Women up 5%, men up 2% • Part time women up 5.6% • Median weekly pay • Women up 2.3%, men up 1.9% • Median pay gap (all women to all men) • Hourly, down from 22% to 19% • Weekly, unchanged at 38%
Slightly more women were earning less than the living wage per week in 2009 (48.5% cf 47%)
Issues which push women into low paid, often low skilled, work – from FPSW events • Unavailability of conveniently located, conveniently timed, high quality, affordable childcare • Government policy has increased demand but not supply (Women’s Budget Group) • Public transport not tailored to women’s needs • Women with no access to private car are forced to work near home or school • Uneven geographical availability of well-paid jobs • Local jobs in rural or urban residential areas are usually low paid • Unavailability of the option of part-time or flexible working in high quality, well-paid jobs • Large numbers of women “downsize” their pay and position when returning to work • Undervaluing of work traditionally done by women • Inadequacy of information, advice and guidance to both girls at school and adult women about career and study options
Conclusions • Paid employment is not a secure route out of poverty or off benefits • 47% of working women earn less than a living wage per week • Women’s low weekly earnings are due to both low hourly pay and part time working • 28% of working women earn less than a living wage per hour • 49% of working women work part time (less than 30 hours a week) • Compared with 2009, in 2012 women worked fewer hours per week • Full time women moving to part time (total up 2%, part time up 7%) • Median hourly pay up 5%, median weekly pay up 2.3% • Cutting women’s benefits is not going to lift them out of poverty! • Government policy should focus on: • Subsidising and providing more good quality flexible childcare • Growth of well paid flexible jobs in accessible places for women • Raising the minimum wage to at least the living wage • Reducing stereotyping in IAG services
Contact Details • Fair Play South West • http://www.equalitysouthwest.org.uk/gender • C/o Equality Southwest • Somerset College, Wellington Road, Taunton TA1 5AX • Lou MaddocksAdministration OfficerEquality South WestTel: 01823 240260E-mail: Louise.email@example.com