is a voluntary organisation committed to reducing the gender pay gap in New Zealand through policy and initiatives to advance pay equity in general and equal pay for work of equal value in particular.
Our members' expertise and experience spans the breadth and history of this important policy issue. The purpose of this website is to provide background information for the current campaign and for the media.
CEVEP has campaigned for effective pay equity policy and legislation since 1986. Our activities include advocating to government and political parties, writing submissions and appearing before select committees, producing materials on pay equity for the public and the media, and organising tours of overseas experts to New Zealand.
In April 2013, CEVEP was invited to be an 'intervening' party to a pay equity test case taken under the Equal Pay Act 1972 by resthome caregiver Kristine Bartlett and the Service & Food Workers Union (now called E Tu).
On 24 November 2016 Cabinet accepted recommendations from its Joint Working Groupon Principles for Implementing Equal Pay.However, it added a supplementary principle: a requirement to work through a 'hierarchy of potential comparator' from within the same workplace or industry (rather than selecting clearly unbiased male dominated jobs and sectors). (See also CEVEP's General Principles for Pay Equity).
On 20 April 2017 the government released an 'exposure draft' of new Employment (Pay Equity & Equal Pay) bill. It is consulting on this until 11 May.
This draft bill raises the barriers for pay equity by requiring women to confront their employer rather than lodging a claim with the Employment Authority, get the boss's agreement that their claim has 'merit', then to bargain with him. It also limits help from mediation or Authority services, and removes women's right to backpay for pay equity only - surely discriminatory. Under this bill, equal pay for work of equal value would become something each woman has to bargain with her boss to get a bit of, rather than our right under international Conventions.
The current Act should only repealed if new legislation can deliver pay equity for women much better - not much worse.
Caregivers finally offered equal pay settlement
The offer lifts care and support workers' pay to between $19 and $23.50 from 1 July 2017, rising to between $21.50 and $27 in July 2021.
This claim was first with the Employment Court in 2012, leading to judgments clarifying that Equal Pay Act did allow equal pay for work of equal value claims for women's and men's typically different work. The government, which funds most care work from our taxes, then set up and join in negotiations to settle the claim. We can expect to see this settlement covered by the Budget in May. See more about the settlement here.
In February 2017 the NZCTU reported that, in advance of revised legislation, it is working with the State Services Commission to progress the PSA's claim for Child Youth & Family social workers and care and support workers, and NZEI's claim for education, behaviour and communication workers in schools. See more.
See Prue Hyman, The case for action now. NZ Herald, 9.2.16
Scoop Business, Pay Equity decision looms, 2.6.16
Linda Hill, Equal pay for equal value: The case for care workers. Women's Studies Journal 27(2) Dec. 2013
Dominion Post Editorial. A blueprint for justice for women in the workplace, 9,6,2016.
Cevep is an active member
For the latest news on the Pay Equity Challenge, see the Coalition's website, blog and RSS feed.
The Pay Equity Challenge Coalition is a broad coalition of community, employer, union, and academic groups who are committed to putting pay equity issues back on the government's, and New Zealand's, agenda.
In 2012 the YWCA also
began to campaign for pay equity, with a petition to Parliament and a
coffee cart that charged men 10% more than women to reflect the gender
difference in median hourly pay.