Dutch politicians propose law to close gender wage gap


In an effort to close the gender wage gap in the Netherlands, parties SP, GroenLinks, 50Plus and PvdA are preparing a legislative proposal that requires companies to be transparent about the salaries they pay to their employees, RTL Nieuws reports.

In this proposal, companies with more than 50 employees are obliged to offer equal pay for equal work. A certification system must be implemented in which companies must publish figures on their employees' salaries every three years. Companies that don't give their employees equal pay for equal work will get a set period to improve this situation. If they don't, they will be fined. 

The parties drew inspiration from Iceland and Germany for this proposal. They want to submit the bill before the end of this parliamentary year. 

Figures from Statistics Netherlands show that women in the Netherlands earn over 16 percent less than men. This can only partly be explained by the fact that women more often work part time or in sectors where wages are lower. 

"The fact that women get paid less than men for the same work is shameful. A hundred years after the introduction of women's suffrage it is high time that we put that right", SP parliamentarian Jasper van Dijk said to the broadcaster. "We are counting on broad support for our law. Parties that do not support us apparently want to return to the previous century."

"At the moment, if you want to prove that you earn less than your male colleague, you have to break through countless barriers to do something about it", PvdA parliamentarian Lilianne Ploumen said. "You have to figure it out for yourself. That is the wrong way round, and that is why we are turning things around in this bill."


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