Advancing Equal Pay and Women’s Economic Wellbeing post-COVID19

Wed 10 June 2020, 1-2pm


Places are limited, so please register here for the event

Despite the passage of the Equal Pay Act in 1972, gender pay gaps remain an intractable feature of the New Zealand labour market. Compared to their male counterparts, women on average earn less, are more likely to take breaks to care for family and to work part time, and are more likely leave the labour market with fewer assets and less retirement income. In addition, these averages mask the disparities experienced by different groups of women. For example, the gender pay gap for Pacific women in the public service was 21 per cent in 2017.

There have been some wins: Kristine Bartlett’s case was critical for advancing pay equity claims, while an increasing number of companies are working to reduce institutional sexism. However, COVID19 brings with it new challenges for women’s economic wellbeing: the policy agenda is crowded, the Equal Pay Amendment Bill remains low down on the parliamentary order paper, while in the UK, pay transparency reporting requirements have been relaxed until further notice. And a new report out of the United States shows that the gender pay gap persists in the remote workforce, with fathers three times more likely to earn a higher salary than mothers.

What then is required to ensure that pay equity practices become an embedded feature of Aotearoa New Zealand’s post-COVID19 economic recovery strategy?


  • Hon Julie Anne Genter (Minister for Women)
  • Laures Park (Matua Takawaenga, NZEI Te Riu Roa)
  • David McLean (Chief Executive, Westpac)
  • Zoe Brownlie (Gender Tick Director, YWCA & ADHB)

 Chair: Professor Jennifer Curtin (Director, Public Policy Institute)

The panel will be recorded and made available after the event on and

Our Policy Forum Series of Seminars is brought to you by the Public Policy Institute (PPI) and

Our Policy Forum Series of Seminars is brought to you by the Public Policy Institute (PPI) and Jennifer Curtin’s Gender Responsive Analysis and Budgeting (GRAB-NZ) project, hosted by the University of Auckland with funding from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

@Policy Auckland

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