The enforcement of gender pay gap reporting has been delayed for another six months, the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has announced.
Companies that fail to meet the 4 April deadline will be given an extension of six months, up until 5 October 2021.However, EHRC are still encouraging companies to submit their data for 2020/2021 before October, where possible.
Enforcement for the reporting year 2019/20 was suspended in March 2020 at the start of COVID-19 pandemic.
The Gender Pay Gap Regulations require employers with 250 or more members of staff to report their gender pay gap.
The regulations state that public sector bodies covered by the regulations must report their data by 30 March. Private sector employers across Great Britain are required to report by 4 April.
Find out more about Gender Pay Gap reporting
The new gender pay reporting regulations came into force in April 2017, and require all employers with 250 or more employees to measure and report their gender pay gaps for the first time.
Women currently earn around 18 per cent less on average than men, despite continued efforts to remove barriers in the workplace. Employers have a critical role to play to help close the gender pay gap.
The Government has announced that employers will not have to report their gender pay gap in 2020/2021.
Due to the Coronavirus outbreak, the Government Equalities Office (GEO) and the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) have taken the decision to suspend enforcement of the gender pay gap deadlines for this reporting year (2019/2020).
The decision means that there will be no expectation on employers to report their data.
Speaking about the decision, Baroness Kishwer Falkner, Chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission, said, “We know businesses are still facing challenging times.”
“Starting our legal process in October strikes the right balance between supporting businesses and enforcing these important regulations.”
“Taking action to reduce the gender pay gap must continue.”
“Reporting provides an opportunity for employers to demonstrate their commitment to gender equality, which will be more important than ever as the effects of the pandemic continue.”
“Employers should still report their gender pay gap data for 2020/21 on time if they can and we encourage them to demonstrate the steps they are taking to reduce long-term pay gaps through detailed action plans.”
The news comes just days after a campaign, led by the Fawcett Society, demanded reinstatement of gender pay gap reporting.
Responding to the suspension of gender pay gap reporting enforcement, the campaign called on the government to reinstate enforcement and require all larger employees to provide their gender pay gap data to ensure the pandemic does not turn back the clock on women and work.
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