I was going through my “blog later” list and realised that this issue had come up again recently in some blogs.
So it seems like a good time to post this from No Minister.
I saw the imbecilic press release from the Pay Equity Challenge Coalition last week, in which it’s claimed that women are effectively working for free until the end of the year because women on average earn 12% less than men, but didn’t plan to write anything about it (other than leaving a comment at the Hand Mirror suggesting the coalition get some members who understand statistics).
However, “not writing about it” was before I realised that a group of women at my workplace, some of whom will earn more than I do for a similar job (through longer service), featured in the local newspaper in a protest claiming they’re being made to work for free until the end of the year because I, along with the other testicle-equipped, am supposedly ripping them off for 12% of their “deserved” salary.
I could forgive this. Many people fail to understand what the term “average” means and there is a general ignorance in society of how to interpret statistics, so it’s not that surprising people should make the mistake. What’s unforgivable: it’s definitely unsurprising they should make that mistake when the women’s group rep organising the protest is a [expletive] social sciences lecturer.
So… someone is complaining (on the basis of a stasticial average) that they get paid less than a man for the same work, when in fact she gets paid more.
I never have any idea what my colleges get paid, but at my last job we were discussing this and I was told by my female colleague that I should be paid more since I actually was better at the job.
Which just serves to remind one that what feminists say should not be taken as the view of women generally.