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Gender pay gap at council continues to reduce

Published: Monday, 4th October 2021

A report has found that the gender pay gap at Birmingham City Council continues to reduce, with the workforce gender balance also becoming more equal, and more women in higher-paid roles.

The report to the Council Leadership Team published today, Monday 4 October, looks at both 2019 and 2020 figures, publication of the former having been postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The median pay gap between men and women (looking at all salaries earned by men and women, and working out the middle value) decreased from 4.5% in 2019 to 3.9% in 2020. This is considerably lower than the national median pay gap of 17.3%. The mean gender pay gap (the difference between average hourly earnings) has also decreased from 6.4% in 2019 to 4.8% in 2020 – however, this is a less reliable figure, and is more likely to be affected by a small number of extremely high or extremely low earners.

Councillor Brigid Jones, Deputy Leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “The continued reduction in gender pay gap at the Council is great news, demonstrating that we are on the right track and that our equality initiatives are having the desired impact. As a City Council, we have a duty to make sure that our workforce is representative of the diverse and vibrant city we serve, and the figures show that we are heading in the right direction.

"There is of course more to do. Women are still over-represented in our lowest paid grades, and we know that they are more likely to be juggling paid work alongside childcare and other caring responsibilities. We also need to make sure that we are creating opportunities for all women, especially those from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds. We are committed to developing opportunities for internal progression and supporting our staff to build long-term careers at the council. Externally, we are always looking to attract candidates from under-represented groups, particularly at the leadership level.

"It is vital that we create an environment where everyone that works for us is able to achieve their full potential. It’s not just the right thing to do for our employees – it’s also the right thing to do for Birmingham, setting the standard and showing the value that diversity can bring to an organisation.”

As a public sector employer with over 250 employees, the City Council is required to publish data on its gender pay gap – the difference between the average hourly wage of all men and all women in our workforce. Publishing this data is a requirement under the Equality Act 2010 (Specific Duties and Public Authorities) 2017.

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