50th Anniversary of equal pay case

Professionals Australia today marks the 50th anniversary of the landmark 1969 equal pay case with a commitment to continuing to highlight and help address the factors that contribute to the gender pay gap in the STEM workforce. 

The 1969 case abolished the right of employers to pay women 25% less than men for performing the same work and laid the foundation for the 1972 case that mandated that women be paid 100% of the male wage. 

Professionals Australia CEO Chris Walton noted that "while the important principle of equal pay for equal work was won, we still have a long way to go to ensure that equal pay is achieved in practice in the STEM fields of engineering, IT, science and pharmacy." 

"We need to look at the systematic undervaluing of work in areas that employ more women than men – the Pharmacists are a classic example of that – and also  to look at fields within professions in which women remain under-represented – like civil engineering, physics and astronomy - and also the complex range of factors that create barriers to women's career advancement and their attrition from the STEM workforce." 

The gender pay gap in STEM