International Equal Pay Day is observed on 18th September. The day voices deep concern over slow progress in women’s economic empowerment, the undervaluing of work traditionally held by women, and the difficulties in tackling pay inequality.
Women’s unequal status at work feeds inequality in other areas of their lives. Women’s jobs are less likely to come with benefits like health insurance and paid time off. Even when women are entitled to a pension, lower salaries mean lower payments in their old age.
International Equal Pay Day aims to highlight the importance of ending sexual discrimination in relation to the gender pay gap which refers to the difference in earnings between men and women in paid employment.
Equal pay for work of equal value is a human right to which all women are entitled.
On 15th November 2019, the Third Committee at the 74th Session of the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution (A/C37/74/L.49) proclaiming 18 September as International Equal Pay Day. Hence, the day was celebrated for the first time on 18 September 2020.
The resolution was co-sponsored by a total of 105 member states. As well as recognizing the contribution of workers’ and employers’ organizations, and businesses, the resolution also acknowledged the work and contribution of the Equal Pay International Coalition (EPIC) to achieving equal pay.
The General Assembly urged action to reach the goal of equal pay for work of equal value for all and encouraged all stakeholders to continue to support the goal of equal pay for work of equal value.
Equal Pay is a Human Right
Women are paid less than men across the world. In India, women earn 19 per cent less than men, according to a survey conducted by Monster Salary Index. Equal pay for equal work is a human right to which all women are entitled.