The report published in early February by NIK (SCA, the Supreme Chamber of Audit) on the remuneration of men and women reads that the wage disparity in the public sector amounts to 10.82 % at the expense of women. – The detailed analysis of the SCA research shows that we are not dealing with gender bias on the part of employers. What is, therefore, the source of such a big wage gap? – asks Monika Zaręba, an expert of the Employers of Poland.
And the answer is: the socio-cultural factors and the institutional availability of childcare. Career development and advancement opportunity evidently limit both the availability of women involved in work and longer breaks in employment.
Therefore, it is right for the department of labour to act so that there is a systematic increase in the number of places in institutions caring for children up to three years old. Unfortunately, more than 90 % of the youngest children are still not provided with such care.
It is worth remembering, though, that last year's amendment to the Labour Code provides for the possibility of combining the employee’s additional maternity leave with doing work at the employer granting the leave of up to half of full-time work.
Maintaining contact with the work environment during the period of caring for a child through a gradual return to the labour market will certainly contribute to the improvement of the process and minimize the consequences associated with a period of inactivity. Of course, the choice belongs to the woman, but still she should be aware of the opportunities she is entitled to in this regard.
Monika Zaręba, an expert of the Employers of Poland