Parallel to the efforts to combat sexual harassment, the Australian workplace is undergoing significant reforms aimed at closing the gender pay gap and fostering gender equality. The Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) has introduced key amendments that demand increased transparency and proactive measures from organisations with over 100 employees.
Key Changes and Expectations of Employers with 100+ employees
On 30 March 2023, Parliament passed the Workplace Gender Equality Amendment (Closing the Gender Pay Gap) Bill 2023. These legislative reforms, effective since 6 February 2023, target private sector employers and Commonwealth public sector organisations with 100 or more employees.
The fundamental changes introduced by the reforms are:
1. Board Reporting:
Employers must share their WGEA Executive Summary and Industry Benchmark Report with their boards from November 2023.
2. Publication of Gender Pay Gaps:
WGEA will publish private sector employer gender pay gaps from early 2024.
3. Additional Employee Information:
Employers must provide additional information on employees, including age, primary workplace location, as well as CEO, head of business, and casual manager remuneration from 1 April 2024.
4. Mandatory Reporting on Harassment and Discrimination:
Reporting on sexual harassment, harassment on the grounds of sex, or discrimination will be mandatory from 1 April 2024.
5. Policy or Strategy Requirement:
Employers with 500 or more staff must have a policy or strategy for the six gender equality indicators from 1 April 2024.
6. Publication of Public Sector Gender Pay Gaps:
WGEA will publish Commonwealth public sector gender pay gaps from late 2024 / early 2025.
These reforms represent a significant stride towards closing the gender pay gap and fostering gender equality in the workplace. Business owners can contribute to a culture of accountability, inclusion, and equality by understanding the fundamental changes and embracing proactive strategies.
For more information on Closing of the Gender Pay Gap Bill and employers’ responsibilities, please visit the WGEA website.
Empowering your Path Forward- How Morrows Can Help
As your trusted advisors, we aim to provide you with actionable insights that will contribute to the success and compliance of your business. If you have any questions or need advice on any workplace legal matters, your advisor can connect you to Morrows Legal Solutions. Our employment lawyers will assist you in keeping up with these changes.
The advice in this article is general in nature and does not constitute legal advice.