EXPOSED: The worst gender pay gap across universities in England is nearly 40%
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York St John University and the agricultural university Harper Adams have been exposed as having the worst gender pay gaps amongst universities in England, with women at these institutions paid a shocking 37.7% less than men. The gender pay gap is the difference between men and women's median average hourly earnings. It is not the same as equal pay, which is a legal requirement that men and women doing the exact same jobs are to be paid the same. This means the gender pay gap average will be higher if men occupy most of the higher-paying jobs within their sector. Tackling this is part of the reason behind getting employers to release their gender pay gap figures. Based on these median average salaries, Harper Adams argued that their results was due to "historical issues of gender balance in certain employment sectors". Although, a similar rural specialist institution, the Royal Agriculture University, has a 0% pay gap. York St John university also defended themselves by arguing that their figures were a result of a fifth of their staff being made up of paid student ambassadors, of whom three-quarters were women. As this is a casual job it is low-paid and thus will impact the average, they said. The third worst gender pay gap belongs to the University of Buckingham, with a 37% difference, however, the university acknowledged their result and said they were "strongly committed to removing barriers to equality". Out of the Russell Group universities, Durham, Warwick and Birmingham came out the worst, with gender pay gaps of 29.3%, 23.4% and 23.3% respectively. According to the University of Warwick, because services such as cleaning are handled 'in-house' this consequently distorts the figures due to the fact these are low-paid jobs mostly taken on by women. The national average for universities across England is 18.4%, which essentially means for every £1 men earn per hour a woman earns 81.6 pence. The only university to pay women more than men was the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, with an average pay gap of 1.9%.
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