In the twenty-first century, you would think that we are past the point, the point of inequality, the point of discrimination and the point of simply, advantage taking. Women all over the world are working the same amount of hours, putting in the same amount of effort and doing the exact same work with the same education and experience as the men in their workforce, but are still being paid less and being left unheard. Society has advanced far from where it was only twenty years ago, now accepting women of all ages to work in any career they wish to work in and we need to continue this growth.
The pay gap has increasingly closed over the past century and continues to do so. Although these changes have occurred, we still face the issue of women’s work and effort being taking advantage of, and it’s time we all stood up and put an end to this.
As a teenaged girl, I don’t want to grow up and live in a world that is ruled by men, where the work I do is minimized or ignored, where I need to put in double the work just to be paid the same as men putting in half the effort.
Full time working women in Australia earn on average 14.1% less than men, which is $239.80 less per week. While Western Australia has the highest gender pay gap at 26.9%. How do you expect young women like me and you, to even want to pursue our dreams, when support for change isn’t being heard, we need to set an example, we need to make a difference and change these statistics!!
Knowing that the place that I live, the state I call home and wish to pursue my career in, is also where I will be most financially disadvantaged as a working woman in Australia.
The stereotypical woman is seen to live a life of having children, becoming a stay at home mum, or engage a part-time job that they never really wanted, therefore putting her life and career on hold. Men, on the other hand, are free to continue their careers and fulfill their life’s dreams. When my mum had me and my brother she had to put her life on hold. She stopped working and became a stay at home mum, looking after her children, while my dad worked a full-time job and was able to continue his career and has only built up his successes to this day. Women all over the world have begun standing up for themselves and their rights, increasing the numbers of a working woman in jobs that were once only held by males and slowly closing that pay gap.
In the future, I want to be an independent woman, not reliant on my husband’s money, but instead, reliant on my own hard-earned money, earned doing a job I enjoy. The gender pay gap is found in nearly every workplace, especially in male-dominated jobs, such as construction, mining or engineering, but are also paid more in some female-dominated jobs too, even when the same work level is being performed. CEOs are seen to be the boss of the workplace, they lead the group and tell everyone what their role is, but for women they aren’t seen to be able to lead a group, take charge or be the boss of their job, therefore are seen to be unable to take on the role of a CEO. There are countless women capable of becoming a CEO but they are shunned away without a chance because of their gender, with only 11 of Australia’s top 200 companies have female CEOs.
Women’s lives are already being run and influenced by men every day, we are being put down for doing these male-dominated jobs and are frowned upon until we change to another career. Stereotypes mould young women into thinking that they don’t deserve to be treated equal to men and that they shouldn’t stand up for themselves. Although most women know their rights and want to be paid equally as men, most women on a whole still don’t feel their views and opinions are being heard. This is blind sighting other women to play it safe, to ignore and not raise the issue, as there is a feeling of being looked upon as a troublemaker or the fear of losing their job.
When I was younger I thought after school that would be it, all I would be was a stay at home mum, reliant on only my husband’s job and money. Stereotype’s made me believe that women could never be smart enough, strong enough or good enough to compare to man. I was tricked into believing that I would never be chosen for a job over a man or paid as much as a man. Now I realize that if I want something bad enough and I put my heart and soul into it, I can get whatever job I want, and deserve the right pay. My dream now is to become a journalist, earning my own money and not being reliant on others money, although I want this dream to become a reality, I may never be fully remunerated equally in the line of journalism, women are being paid 7.2% on average, less than men even when 59% of journalists are women while only 41% are men. How am I supposed to want to pursue my dream job, when even though it’s a woman dominant job, I will still be fighting for equality.
Sexism has lead our society to a gender pay gap, and a gender pay gap is leading to discrimination of all girls and women striving to accomplish a fair economy for us and future generations. Women all over the world have already tried changing this, but nobody hears them out, we can make a difference through raising the minimum wage, this would not only help women but also their families and could further help immigrants, the homeless and countless people just unable to earn enough money to live a stable life. Women make up the disproportionate share of low pay workers. In 2012, women accounted for almost two-thirds of all minimal wage workers, with the current minimal wage being below the poverty threshold for families with children and close to the poverty line for a single person. If we increase the minimum wage we will help almost 15 million women and their families and not only will this help close the gender pay gap but this may also help to solve countless other issues people everywhere are facing.
Sexism is illegal, but yet it occurs every day and nobody thinks twice about it. The world is already pursuing this issue to put an end to the pay gap, but is it enough? By closing this gap it could also put us a step closer to helping other issues and highlighting the main problems that need to be addressed. Now is the time we need to change, we can’t put future generations through all this. Australia is the lucky country for a reason, and that reason is that it stands up for what’s right and treats everyone equally and fairly, let’s make sure Australia stays this way by continuing to stand up for others equality and making a difference to everyone. We all have a voice, our opinions should be heard, and the more people that stand up to issues, the more these problems are addressed and change can begin in our society. We can then become all equal.
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