Women who have children before the age of 33 suffer a 15 per cent ‘pay penalty’ compared to women who do not have children, new research has shown.
In a study conducted by the TUC (Trades Union Congress), it was revealed that young mothers are more likely to suffer poor treatment at work. Of those surveyed, a fifth of mothers under the age of 25 said they were dismissed or forced out of their jobs because of pregnancy or maternity leave.
The research, released on International Women’s Day, said the ‘pay penalty’ was likely due to mothers being out of work for a significant amount of time and only returning to full-time work when their children were older; or due to mothers working part-time to suit childcare.
Speaking about the study Frances O’Grady, TUC general secretary said, “This research shows that millions of mothers still suffer the motherhood pay penalty.”
“We need to do far more to support all working mums, starting by increasing the number of quality part-time jobs and making childcare much more affordable.”
“Women in full-time, well-paid jobs shouldn’t be the only ones able to both become parents and see their careers progress. All women worried about their pay and conditions should join a union to get their voices heard and their interests represented.”
The TUC are calling for there to be increased support for equal parenting roles; more free childcare to help mothers stay in work; an increase in flexible working; and for more awareness and action taken for those suffering from workplace discrimination. They also argue that new mothers should not have to pay £1,200 to take their employer to a tribunal.