Western Australia has the largest gender pay disparity in the nation, with women earning an average of $469 per week less than men.
Figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics reveal that efforts to bridge the pay gap in WA have failed, with the gulf between male and female average weekly ordinary time earnings increasing from 24 per cent to almost 27 per cent in the three years to November 2012.
Nationally, men earn an average of $262 per week, or 18 per cent, more than women.
Unions WA acting secretary Meredith Hammat said employers should focus on improving recruitment practices and introducing flexible work arrangements to enable women to work in non-traditional roles, such as those in the high-paying resources sector.
“WA is going backwards – the gap is actually getting worse, not better,” she said.
“The costs of living in WA are high and rising, so that makes this difference all that more stressful.
“For women to be earning so much less is not good for workplaces, or for relationships between women and men at home or in the community.”
The average weekly earnings for full-time adults across the nation increased by five per cent in the three months to November 2012. Western Australians’ average weekly earnings are among the highest in the nation, second only to the Australian Capital Territory.