Revealed: The Gender Pay Gap Feminists Don’t Want to Talk About
To little fanfare from the usual trumpeters of pay inequality, figures released last week highlighted a new, and growing, gender pay gap.
Perhaps we can gain some insight into why the usual suspects lay silent when the latest tranche of data emerged from one of the few headlines it did garner: Earnings inequality among men soars.
Men? On the rough end of the equal pay pineapple? Surely some mistake?
Irrefutable new research by the Institute for Fiscal Studies found that the number of men in low-paid part-time work has increased 400% in the past 20 years.
Twenty years ago only 1 man in 20 aged 25-55 with low hourly wages worked part-time. Today the figure is one in five.
Furthermore, while 95% of top-earning men normally work full-time, 20% of the lowest-paid are now part-timers.
That means wage inequality for men has risen over two decades, while for women the opposite has been true.
Indeed, women in their 20s now earn more than men, a trend that will surely continue, since a girl born in 2017 is 75% more likely to go to university than a boy.
These women with better educations will be more likely to move into full-time work and have less incentive to leave it, further widening the gap.
But back to the men working part time, whose earnings, job security and public esteem are the lowest of the low.
We hear a lot about glass ceilings and now “glass walls” – power that women can see, but can’t get to, thanks to institutionalised misogyny.
But these men are trapped at the bottom – in the glass cellar.
And it’s hardly even news. Men have been quietly doing the jobs nobody else wants for decades.
The government no longer publishes data on average hourly wages for part-time workers, but the latest figures show the average median pay for men who work part-time across all age groups is £7.90 per hour, compared with £8.40 for women.
This equates to a 5.4% gender pay gap in favour of women, and there’s little reason to believe anything has changed since, as men are forced further down the part-time pecking order.
As Glen Poole of the Men & Boys Coalition puts it: “There are currently around two million men in the UK have part-time jobs and fewer than half (46%) say they are working part-time because they don’t want a full-time job.
“In contrast, 75% of the six million women who work part time say they choose to work shorter hours because they don’t want a full-time job”.
Those figures hold true in 2017. Women are twice as likely to be working part time in their twenties and four-and-a-half times more likely in their thirties.
Firstly, this clearly shows more than half of men in part time work are underemployed: they want to work more, but can’t.
For gender pay gap zealots this is deeply problematic on two counts. One, it shows the overriding majority of women who are working part time are are happy about it.
Two, those part time workers, when put into the overall salary pot, drag women’s average pay down, helping to create the mainstream gender pay gap.
So we can see with total clarity that the gender pay gap exists not because of sexism (it’s been illegal to pay women less for the same work since 1970), but women’s lifestyle choices, both in choosing to work part time and choosing full-time jobs with less pay.
Forget glass ceilings and walls, the misogyny-based gender pay gap theory has a glass jaw when subjected to any scrutiny.
Which is why this latest IFS report passed with barely a flicker on the bleeding-heart Richter scale – because it contains inconvenient truths which, again, torpedo gender pay gap theory.
But where were the placard-wielding men marching on Westminster, angrily tweeting MPs or organising sit-ins to highlight their suffering?
They were busy emptying bins, sweeping streets, cleaning sewers and scratching around for a day’s labour.
In other words, it was just another day of men doing society’s dirtiest and most dangerous jobs, while getting scant reward for the “privilege” of being male.