WA revealed to have largest gender pay gap in Australia

The national average difference between what women and men get paid each week is 14 per cent, with WA leading the pack at 21.8 per cent, according to new data.

The national gender pay gap now stands at 14 per cent and differs across the states, according to new data released on Wednesday, which is National Equal Pay Day.

Six months ago, it was 14.1 per cent, the Workplace Gender Equality Agency, a government statutory body, says.

On average, women working full-time earned $1484.80 while men working full-time earned $1726.30 a week, a difference of $241.50.


The national gender pay gap measures the difference between the average weekly full-time base salary earnings of women and men, expressed as a percentage of men's earnings, the agency says in a statement.

It is a measure of women's overall position in the paid workforce and does not compare like roles.

South Australia (9.2 per cent or $140.90) and Victoria (9.6 per cent or $160) had the lowest gaps while Western Australia had the highest, at 21.8 per cent ($419.50).

"The gender pay gap matters for women. Although the gap is closing faster in some states than others, Australian women still have to deal with a pay gap favouring men in every state and territory of our nation," said Libby Lyons, director of the Workplace Gender Equality Agency.

"These results also show that the barriers women face in having the same opportunities and rewards in our workplaces as men remain stubbornly persistent. It's well beyond time for this to change."

Ms Lyons called for more efforts from employers to address pay equity, saying the gap will not close on its own without co-operation from all concerned.

Pay gap
Australia's gender pay gap by state. Source: WGEA

Earlier this month, Angela Tomazos, director of policy at the Business and Professional Women Australia network, told SBS News change is happening every day, but the rate of change needs to increase. 

“It's more worrying about how long it would take for us to close that gap completely,” she said.

“I maintain optimism that if we continue on this path and we can get that momentum of everyone coming on board that it [equal pay] doesn't have to be more than a lifetime away.”

2 min read
Published 28 August 2019 at 9:24am