March 5 designated Equal Pay Day in Taiwan
The Council of Labor Affairs has designated March 5 Equal Pay Day in Taiwan as part of ROC government efforts to raise awareness of the gap between men and women’s wages.
Government statistics show that last year the average wage for men was 17.6 percent higher than that for women, which means that women would have had to work 65 extra days to make the same amount that men earned.
The CLA has thus selected the 65th day of the year—March 5—to call for equal pay for men and women, CLA Minister Wang Ju-hsuan explained. To show where Taiwan stands in the world, she noted that this year the marker falls on March 2 in the European Union, April 17 in the U.S. and May 21 in South Korea.
“We hope this day will serve as a reminder of how far all of us have to work together to eliminate this inequity,” Wang said.
Pointing out that in 2001 women would have had to work 75 more days than men to earn the same wages, she said more needs to be done to move the day ahead.
“Progress in narrowing the gap has been really slow,” said Ho Bih-jen, Secretary-General of the National Alliance of Taiwan Women’s Associations.
“The CLA should toughen its workplace inspection routines, particularly at large businesses,” she said.
In response, the council reaffirmed that it will continue efforts to increase pay for women, raise women’s labor participation, revise laws to facilitate protection of rights and create friendlier working conditions for women.
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