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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-16407: Kezia Dugdale (Lothian)

Scottish Labour

Date lodged: 4 May 2018

To ask the Scottish Government what steps it is taking to encourage the finance sector to address the gender pay gap.

Answered by: Jamie Hepburn 16 May 2018

Scottish Government research in 2016 into the drivers of the gender pay gap showed that the gap in the finance sector was mainly due to women not progressing to senior positions as quickly as their male counterparts or to roles more likely to attract bonus payments. This is unacceptable.

To help employers we are providing £205,000 to Close the Gap for July 2017- June 18 to challenge and change employment practices and workplace cultures.

As announced in the Child Poverty Action Plan we are establishing a Gender Pay Gap Working Group that includes expert stakeholders such as Close the Gap, Engender and STUC. The working group, which I will chair, will identify specific actions to reduce gender pay gaps across sectors as a key element of the Scottish Government’s inclusive growth vision.

In September 2017 the Scottish Government awarded £48,500 to Women Returners Ltd to deliver the Returners to Financial Services Scotland Programme. This will assist professionally qualified women who have had a career break to return to work in the finance sector.

The Scottish Government will continue to encourage all employers to tackle gender inequalities. That is why we promote Close the Gap’s free online toolkit to assist employers to report their gender pay gap to comply with the regulations. We are also providing £159,000 for 2018-19 to Family Friendly Working Scotland Partnership to support and promote development of family friendly workplaces.