Jenny Willott, the Liberal Democrat MP for Cardiff Central, has welcomed Liberal Democrat manifesto plans which would make it a legal requirement for companies to publish what they pay men and women.
Under the proposals companies employing more than 250 people would have to publish the difference in pay rates between men and women or face a £5,000 fine. Currently leading employers are encouraged to publish pay gap information on a voluntary basis. Only 140 out of 7,000 big firms have done so.
In 2013, the average woman earned 19.7% less than the average man. The average hourly wage for women was £10.33 while men were paid £12.97.
The Liberal Democrats are the first major party to commit to enforcing gender pay transparency by law.
Commenting, Jenny Willott MP, said:
"There are more women in work than ever before but on average women are paid 20% less than men. Making it a legal requirement for companies to publish what they pay will create more openness and help us make progress in closing any gap that exists.
"Since 2011 Liberal Democrats in Government have worked tirelessly to promote equality in the work place: we have introduced a new system of flexible parental leave, extended free childcare and free school meals, blocked plans to undermine workers' rights and engaged closely with business groups to improve workplace equality. It is only right that we now lift the lid on pay."