Belinda Brown: Gender pay gap explained. Men work longer hours in tough jobs

We are having one of our regular drumbeats about the gender pay gap, with the BBC singing the chorus and the liberal media playing the tune.

The reality is that from 20-39 women are paid marginally more than men. By their late 30s the choices which women have made around their children and family start to be reflected in what they are paid for their work.

We have a wage gap because women prefer shorter hours, flexible and not too demanding employment, and they don’t like to travel far to their work. They are much more likely to work part-time encouraged by the fact that they are paid 5.7 per cent more than men for this. Women choose jobs which they can fit around their families and children. They prefer to work with people, which encourages them into less lucrative sectors of the employment market. Men are happier to work with things.

The idea is that we are paid the same for work of equal value. However equal value is not determined by market forces but by what women consider fair. That men are more likely to relocate or spend longer travelling to work, work outside doing strenuous and frequently hazardous activities, the fact that they work longer hours and do more overtime – none of this seems to be factored in when determining the value of work. Birmingham City Council had to pay one billion pounds to dinner ladies who decided, along with a legal system that backed them, that their work was of equal value to dustbin men’s – men who no doubt start their day a lot earlier and are employed for longer hours and do smelly, outdoor, physically strenuous work.

I recently pointed out how when it comes to our education system, equality policies focus on one tiny corner, the employment of senior academics, because this is the only area in the whole of the education system where women are either not dominant or at least equally employed. Feminists have adopted the same strategy when it comes to work.

No one complains about the fact that men work longer and harder than women. Nor that a larger proportion of men’s wages are paid in tax. We are not interested in the fact that men are more likely to be killed or injured at work. Or that their absence from the corridors of higher education means that their employment opportunities are dropping fast. No one campaigns for equal wages for men in part-time employment and men do not complain about severely reduced access to flexible work. Women have little reason to be concerned by any of these things since they are the ones spending the vast majority of what men earn.

This is, of course, the reason why men are better at negotiating wages – the only area of the gender pay gap that may be real. Where women work for themselves, men work for others. Women’s interest in their family motivates them to work fewer hours. Men’s interest in their family motivates them work longer hours and ask for more money.

Leading women to believe that they are being treated unfairly will increase their perceived injustice. Encouraging them to demand more from companies, as Education Secretary Nicky Morgan is doing, will increase the female sense of entitlement. Neither will lead employers to wanting more women at work.

 

(Image: BPW Germany, Flickr)

Belinda Brown

  • Earthenware

    “Encouraging them to demand more from companies, as Education Secretary Nicky Morgan is doing”

    What’s worrying about this is that it seems that the government actually believe in the gender pay gap. Either that or it’s just a cynical attempt to cash in on the victim mentality that feminists are encouraging in women.

    At best it’s window-dressing based on ignorance, at worst it’s an acceptance of a destructive force rather than combating. A choice between bad or worse (or worser as Mrs Morgan would probably say).

    Hands up if you voted for this because you thought Ed Milliband was incompetent.

    • Craig Martin

      That last line just made me cough Pepsi out of my nose.
      Thank you.

  • Colkitto03

    Excellent peice Belinda, I dont accept for a minute that Nicky Morgan beleives that this “pay gap” is a real issue or any any way unjust. She is intelligent and must realise that the earnings gap is caused by the reasons set out above by Belinda above. For me its just another part of the Conservative Party’s tactics to steal more and more of the labour voting base while thier party is in chaos. Dont get me wrong i dont support this tactic and I think it is very disingenuos. As for the feminist groups that promote this myth I think that it is a reflection of the fact that they really struggle in 2015 to find any plausible female injustice issues in the western world. Thats why we hear complaints about “mansplaining” and “manspreading” and banning the word “bossy” It this constant grasping at straws that shows how fundamentally weak thier cause now is.

    • Lorirpahl2

      ;c125Work At Home….Special Report….Earn 18k+ per monthfew days ago new McLaren. F1 bought after earning 18,512$,,,this was my previous month’s paycheck ,and-a little over, 17k$ Last month ..3-5 h/r of work a days ..with extra open doors & weekly. paychecks.. it’s realy the easiest work I have ever Do.. I Joined This 7 months ago and now making over 87$, p/h.Learn. More right Here;c125➤➤➤➤➤ http://www.nationalemployments.com.­nu .❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:::::;c125…….

    • Lana Taylor

      :f152Work At Home….Special Report….Earn 18k+ per monthfew days ago new McLaren. F1 bought after earning 18,512$,,,this was my previous month’s paycheck ,and-a little over, 17k$ Last month .,3-5 h/r of work a days ..with extra open doors & weekly. paychecks.. it’s realy the easiest work I have ever Do.. I Joined This 7 months ago and now making over 87$, p/h.Learn. More right Here:f152➤➤➤➤➤ http://www.dailyfinancialreports.com.­nu .❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2:❦2::::::f152…

  • Jenny L

    Excellent article Belinda, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.

  • Bogbrush

    Agree, the whole gender pay gap nonsense is part of a pattern that’s such a downer on women. Imagine being indoctrinated from an early age how you have no fair chance, how no matter how well you do you’ll be done down, and how when you go fail it’s not s reason to get up and do it better but because you were stopped.

    How is anyone expected to succeed in that environment?

    It’s do much easier being a man, and every time feminists play their silly games they make it easier.

    • Craig Martin

      “How is anyone expected to succeed in that environment?”

      They’re not, which is exactly the outcome the professional victims want. God forbid they actually be expected to claim responsibility for their own results in life.

  • Gimme some fightin’ room

    Superb article Belinda.

  • Phil R

    We can solve the gender pay gap tomorrow.

    Women could chose Electrical Engineering instead of Icelandic Studies, infant teaching or funky dancing degrees at Uni.

    • disqus_QL05BqU79X

      You’ve struck at a thick root of the ongoing problem there, by the way. While we’re exposing the idiocy of gender issues among us sensible, working adults, the next generation of vulnerable kids are being indoctrinated into bigoted thought patterns in state schools with almost no male staff or role models at all. Tally this in with the fact that a third of kids grow up without a father in the house and you can expect all these destructive problems to worsen.

      Also, is there really a BA in Funky Dancing? Or is it a BSc? I’m in.

      • Phil R

        My wife used to run a playgroup for 2 to 5 year olds with other mums. It was low stress and cost the state nothing.

        Now it is called FS1 and FS2 it is staffed with full time Teachers and TAs. They have grown it into a huge job and I was talking to an “infant teacher” the other day who was off sick due to the “stress” and “workload” while working in what amounts to a well funded playgroup.

        If we want to save 25% of the education budget then we stop formal education before the age of 7 (There is little evidence that it makes much difference as our competitors do this and get better outcomes at age 16)

        We would then have saved vast sum of money and could use some of it to pay maths and physics teachers a great deal more.

        Obvious solution? Well yes but schools are not about education. The reason for the well funded playgroup is all about free child care for working mums.

      • Craig Martin

        I’m grabbing my Goldfish Platforms and silver flares

  • Bonce

    The Gender pay gap myth was debunked 10 years ago.
    The fact that leftists still bring it up as an example of some form of oppression by the “patriarchy” just shows how disingenuous they are.
    For the rabid man hating feminists, the facts never mattered. Its all about breaking down the family and breaking down the traditional roles which made our societies great. Its all about Frankfurt school cultural marxism (11 objectives).
    Feminists and leftists will never admit the facts and will never admit that the gender pay gap does not exist.

    • Jack Strawb

      As a long-time “leftist” (do I get a Mao jacket with that?) I can assure you the ‘gender pay gap’ is nonsensical, destructive garbage.

      Perhaps someday, when you’re motivated to do your own thinking, you’ll figure out that the overwhelming majority of men on the left are not feminists, and don’t agree with–some of us even fight!–the rhetoric and practices of that gender-supremacy hate movement.

      • Bonce

        You are a traditional Leftist and part of the old Left, no objections to that. I have issues with the “Regressive Left” also know as “Progressives”

    • Fred Neecher

      Not “leftists” – feminists. You may be on the wrong site.

  • Mike Buchanan

    Belinda, thanks for yet another excellent piece. I recently had the pleasure of discussing the gender pay gap with Kate Green MP, Shadow MInister for Women and Equalities, in a 15-minute-long filmed piece https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kvh_I2OhwXc.

    • JB

      Interesting reaction from Kate Green about the ‘gender imbalance’ (favouring females) in the medical profession. She seemed completely unconcerned about it. I think that highlights the real agenda.

      • Jack Strawb

        Just so. “Equality” for women in all areas where they appear to lag, and the preservation and even the increase of privilege or superiority in all areas where women are ahead.

        Can you think of a single area in which women are significantly ahead of men, and where feminists are working towards equality, such as college admissions or health care spending (where women receive noticeably more money despite living five years longer than men)?

        I can’t. I can’t think of a single example in the half century during which feminism has become one of the dominant forms of discourse.

        • Mike Buchanan

          Not quite ‘Equality for women in all areas they appear to lag’. Suicide, unemployment, genital mutilation are just three of the areas covered in our 2015 general election manifesto. The Crown never prosecutes women for paternity fraud. Women ca destroy men’s lives with an allegation of rape, the man’s identity will be revealed to the world, while the woman’s wont be.

          I’m guessing too that they’re not looking for equality in prison sentencing. If male criminals were sentenced with the same leniency as female criminals, five out of six men in British prisons wouldn’t be there, as William Collins showed http://mra-uk.co.uk/?p=215. He also posted a fine piece on the gender pay gap http://mra-uk.co.uk/?p=150.

      • Mike Buchanan

        Needless to day she was selected as a PPC from an all-women shortlist, and outrageously tried to defend the lists when we were in the Green Room before the discussion. I sharply criticised a number of Labour MPs – Harriet Harman, Yvette Balls and Jess Phillips come to mind – to which she replied they were all good friends of hers, and I retorted, ‘And your point would be…?’ She then did a fine impression of a goldfish gulping for air.

        • JB

          I’m sure they’ll be drawing up all male shortlists for teaching positions, anytime soon……..

          • Craig Martin

            As my beard continues to grow and turn white.

  • Groan

    Yes good short and succinct. Sating the position exactly. Men are somehow “invisible”. In the recent storms and floods our new was full of scenes of men at work. Building sandbag walls, repairing railways, swinging in electricity pylons, moving felled trees, building temporary bridges and so on. Yet it never occurs to note this. I hope the men were properly recompensed for the hard dangerous and family unfriendly work they did and are doing. If in the employ of public bodies probably not due to pay being reduced to match female “equivalents”. In this sense the importation of poor eastern European men skilled in productive work and used to much poorer wages has rescued us from our own folly . I wonder just how long an economy bases on family friendly hours and shopping can survive? Or indeed how long before more and more men notice just how “taken for granted” their hard work is?
    As a final comment Belinda I have to commend you for your comment about the “push” men get to get on from their responsibilities for spouse and children. It is deeply irritating to constantly here that men are more mercenary in their attitudes as if they are morally inferior, when in fact men both seek funding for their future or actual families and then usually see that money mainly spent on their family.

  • Paul

    Let’s start equal spend day, that day in the year when women have already spent as much as men will spend in the whole of the year, probably happens about mid-March.

    • Groan

      This is important because in a consumer economy ( one increasingly consuming using private debt.) the advertising and the media it funds will be focussed on the best consumers. Women.

  • Jack Strawb

    Bravo. Thanks for writing this, Belinda.

  • Jack Strawb

    How many here have noticed that there is indeed a pay gap, but it is a pay gap that significantly disfavors men?

    In the games of rhetoric and politics, we’ve been playing defense on this issue for so long we’ve failed to establish the most obvious of points:

    Any job requiring strength and stamina, and for which men and women are paid equally, will be underpaying men. Take simple grunt work on a construction site, then take men and women with comparable experience and work history. A given man will do 1-1/2 to 2 times as much work as a given woman. This holds true for more specialized work as well. Hanging drywall, running a cutoff saw, roofing, pretty much everything. Even electrical work, which requires a surprising amount of strength.

    In addition, when the work is all purpose and a variety of jobs need to be done, having a woman on the job site means she will typically get the easiest and lightest of the work, meaning that work will no longer be available for men to rotate through in order to get a bit of break. (I’ve noticed that on jobsites, men taking a break means doing lighter work, while women taking a break means actually sitting down for ten minutes and resting of necessity.)

    Nothing against women, but let’s not pretend that “equal pay for equal work” is actually anything like equal pay for equal WORK.

    Men are getting shortchanged.

  • disqus_QL05BqU79X

    It has been noted that, in the US, a refuse collector is two-and-a-half times more likely to die from his work than a police officer. That’s some statistic. Considering how much safer police work is in the UK, that risk disparity must be somewhat greater here. How in the name of all that is holy can dinner ladies compare their work to that?

    Ho hum. Onward and downward…to socio-economic collapse.

    • Craig Martin

      I suppose if Dinner Ladies have to actually sample their own works…..

  • Shrek6

    Wow, I cannot believe it. A woman with natural common sense and a natural ability to see reality.
    I am not trying to insult anyone here, but I find this astounding that we don’t see more women writing articles like this, because the lies told about the pseudo-wage gap are so over the top and old, we have all known for a long time that this is just another desperate grab by feminists who are part of a dying ideology.

    They keep repeating this lie, because it still gets them money!

    Belinda, thank you for writing this. I commend you for taking the risk of being abused by these lunatic feminists and for having the courage to speak out publicly. It’s a pity more of the ‘mature’ women out there don’t have the same courage as you.

    Well done!