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From The Socialist newspaper, 8 November 2017

Bosses predict 217 years to close gender pay gap...

workers' struggle can close it now!

Barts NHS workers striking for better pay, 3.8.17, photo Sarah Wrack

Barts NHS workers striking for better pay, 3.8.17, photo Sarah Wrack   (Click to enlarge)

Tessa Warrington, Leicester Socialist Party

It will now take 217 years before women earn the same as men, according to the World Economic Forum. Even this estimation is a whopping 47 years longer than it predicted last year!

This is the first time these figures have shown the situation is going backwards. Perhaps unsurprising - as today's generation is also the first since the 1940s to be worse off than our parents.

It is clear that almost a decade of capitalist crisis and austerity is having a devastating impact on the working class. But especially so on those who rely on the public sector to even the playing field.

One million public sector jobs have been axed, and wages frozen for the rest, since 2008. This has traditionally been a majority-female workforce due to hard-won benefits such as flexi-time and part-year working, which support women with children staying in employment.

Women forced into private sector jobs are more likely to encounter zero-hour contracts and low pay. Many have had to give up their jobs as work-based crèche programmes are cut and the cost of childcare outweighs their monthly salary.

The gender pay gap is not simply about achieving like-for-like pay for men and women in the same positions. It is also about the ability of women to access higher-paid roles.

Women from wealthy backgrounds can afford a good education and childcare. But the vast majority of women are working class, and we rely upon the state, which is brutally hacking away at this support.

It is therefore outrageous that the World Economic Forum report shows the UK rising five places in global rankings due to what the Guardian calls "improvement in the political indicators after the appointment of Theresa May"!

Female representatives of the super-rich like May and Thatcher never did anything for working class women.

That's why women made up a majority of campaigners and voters for Corbyn, seeing that socialist policies could improve our lives.

The Socialist Party doesn't believe women will have to wait 217 years for equality. The World Economic Forum is a meeting of the capitalist elite. Organisations like that miss one crucial factor in their calculations: the ability of the working class to fight.

The welfare state was won through trade union struggle, and can be won again - this time finishing the job.

We need a mass, united struggle of working class women and men - including coordinated strikes - to overcome austerity, sweep aside gender discrimination and toss the sexist capitalist system onto the scrapheap where it belongs.

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In The Socialist 8 November 2017:


What we think

'Paradise' for billionaires - austerity for us


Socialist Party news and analysis

Westminster sexual harassment scandal

Walk out against tuition fees!

Bosses say 217 years to close pay gap - workers' struggle can close it now!

We can win the vote at 16!

Child poverty set to hit 5.2m - unions and Corbyn must act now

PFI privateers dodge tax

What we saw


Workplace news and analysis

Pay cap decisively rejected by PCS union members

BA mixed-fleet workers show strikes get results

Unite union sector conferences: coordinate action over pay

Picturehouse strike: "evil corporations are evil"

Arriva bus strike still solid


International socialist news and analysis

US: Minneapolis Socialist chimes with voters

Ireland: rail workers demand share of 'recovery'

Ireland: dangerous ideas for the ruling class

Spain: Madrid rally celebrates October revolution

Sweden: 'Revolution2017' success


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Health campaign discusses strategy to save NHS

Chatsworth neuro-rehab ward still open - unions join the campaign

Housing campaigners ask Corbyn to instruct Labour council regeneration ballots

Thousands march in London for Palestine

Opposition to new academy school being built on Leeds playing fields

Orgreave campaigners' Halloween 'Death of Justice' march

Sheffield trees campaigner sentenced to prison

Brum meeting celebrates centenary of 1917


Socialist readers' comments and reviews

Obituary: Derek Robinson, car workers' leader, 1927-2017

Welsh update of Chekhov an engrossing tale of 1980s class conflict

Obituary: Paul Randall, 1959-2017

The Socialist inbox


 

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Related links:

Women:

triangleLondon Socialist Party women's meeting

triangleDoes the fight for Trans rights conflict with women's rights?

triangleBristol North Socialist Party: International Women's Day and the Russian Revolution

triangleSwansea Socialist Party: Fighting to end women's oppression

triangleNorthern Ireland: Workers fight threatened closure of women's hostel

Working class:

triangleMay Day Greetings: Back the paper that backs the working class

triangleMutual aid, the welfare state and the fight for a new mass workers' party

triangleChile's working class delivers vote against ultra-right

triangleChile's working class delivers a landslide vote against ultra-right Kast

Pay:

triangleTV review: This is Going to Hurt

triangleJust Eat couriers continue action to fight pay cut

triangleUniversity workers continue strike against bosses' attacks

Jobs:

triangleTesco slashes jobs and customer service

triangleTories attack UC recipients with 'get any job' threat

World Economic Forum:

triangleBillionaires avoid paying and even talking about tax! Take the wealth off the 1%

Public sector:

triangleFight together for a pay rise

Austerity:

triangleWhy I joined: I'm tired of austerity and status quo

Wages:

triangleFight for a socialist recovery

Low pay:

triangleAustralian nurses strike against understaffing and low pay

Children:

triangleDefending abortion rights in the US

Benefits:

triangleWest Sussex care campaigners' victory

Discrimination:

triangleMet police boss ousted

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Britain

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Covid

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triangleMore articles...


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