EWL News

Sweden: Women work unpaid after 15:51 - Campaign on gender pay gap

[Brussels, 16 March 2012] For the International Women’s Day 2012, the Swedish Women’s Lobby initiated an extensive campaign to raise awareness on the pay gap between women and men. The campaign, supported by a broad coalition of workers unions, political parties and women’s rights organizations, received great media attention and created a public debate on the gender pay gap in Sweden.

The historical uniqueness of this project is due to the wide range of partners, and the fact that they all agree on the economic discrimination of women being a structural problem.

The starting-point of the campaign is that women in Sweden, with the current pay gap of 14,3%, work unpaid after 15:51 (3:51 pm). This is calculated on a working day from 8 to 5. On the 08 March, thousands of people participated in the campaign via Facebook and Twitter. The campaign also encouraged people to upload their auto-reply on their office email accounts. The message: "After 15:51 women work for free - every day. It is time for pay all day", circulated all over the Internet. For more information visit the campaign page “Pay All Day” at Facebook.

The pay gap between men and women in Sweden has remained unchanged since the early 1980’s. The collaboration, called the “15:51-initiative”, will continue to work on the issue until the gap is closed. Let us hope that for the next International Women’s Day, the digits will have moved forward.

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