Kate Sheppard’s legacy still has to be lived up to

As we celebrate 122 years of women having the vote in New Zealand tomorrow, court battles to ensure women get paid the same as men show there is still a long way to go, Labour’s Woman’s Caucus chair Poto Williams says. 

“It is a shame in this day and age that female aged care workers are paid $7 less an hour than prison guards – a job considered comparable.

“Labour remains committed to closing the gender pay gap and ensuring the work women do is valued. 

“Wage inequality is not just a problem in the private sector. The Humans Rights Commission has found that 21 government agencies have a pay gap higher than 14.3 per cent. 

“Labour has a proud record of fighting for women’s rights. 

“This week 26 weeks paid parental leave became a step closer after a Member’s Bill from Sue Moroney passed its first hurdle. Labour’s plan has the support of the majority of the public and Parliament. 

“However, even this crucial legislation could be scuttled by a National Government which has failed to prioritise women’s issues and whose decisions have reversed some of the gains that New Zealand women have made in leadership roles,” says Poto Williams.