Ivana Bacik TD
03 May 2017

Labour Senator Ivana Bacik has described the new National Strategy for Women and Girls 2017-2020 as a ‘welcome start’ on the road toward greater equality between men and women, and reiterated the Labour Party’s commitment to legislate for gender pay gap transparency and so-called ‘revenge porn’.

Senator Bacik commented:

“Any moves to bring about greater gender equality are to be welcomed, and I note that this strategy followed public consultation and input from groups such as the National Women’s Council.

“While Ireland has come a long way, there is still much to be done to achieve full equality between men and women, particularly in the area of pay. Just yesterday for example, CSO figures showed that the Gender Pay Gap in the Industrial sector stood at 23 per cent in 2014.

“While I welcome that the new National Strategy includes a commitment to introduce measures that tackle the gender pay gap, including undertaking wage transparency surveys, Labour believes companies can’t be relied upon to volunteer this information, and needs to be legislated on.

“To this effect, our Gender Pay Gap Information Bill would require companies with at least 50 employees to regularly report on the earnings of their male and female workers, and I look forward to introducing the Bill to the Seanad later this month. We have already seen this system work in countries like Belgium, which has a pay gap of just under 7 per cent, with similar moves underway in the UK.

“Women are sadly too often being targeted online, and Labour is keen to get the grips with the modern phenomenon of so-called ‘revenge porn’. My colleague Brendan Howlin’s Harassment and Related Offences Bill 2017 has created a new offence of distributing an intimate image without consent, and we look forward to presenting it to colleagues in the Dáil soon.”

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