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Can you guess which country has made it ILLEGAL to pay women less than men?

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In January of this year, Iceland passed a law making it illegal for women to be paid less than men, becoming the first country in the world to do so.

The law followed a promise by the government to erase the existence of a gender pay gap by 2022.

The new gender pay equality law was announced on the 8th of March this year, on International Women’s Day.

In September 2015, speaking at a Global Leaders’ Meeting, the then Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson announced the plan saying 'men cannot sit idly by when issues such as gender-based violence and the gender pay gap are being discussed.'

So how will this law be enforced?

Under this new law, companies in Iceland employing over 25 people will be required to obtain a government certification that acknowledges the presence of equal pay in the company.

The company will then undergo a certification inspection every three years to ensure that this equal pay is still present.

Speaking to TNS, English student Emily Goulding said that the initiative was 'great.'

“I honestly think it’s great, because it really does strive for equality unlike in a lot of countries and even in the UK, where men often are paid more than women as a result of a real lack of determination surrounding the law."

So there can be no doubt that although this new policy may be flawed, these are aspects that can be corrected and it is applaudable that Iceland has taken these steps towards equality. Such a policy will hopefully inspire other countries to take the same approach, making the existence of a pay gapless and less common and less acceptable.

Featured (altered) image courtesy of biologyfishman

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