A consultation has been initiated by the Government to determine whether the mandatory reporting of ethnicity pay gap figures would help to address the disparity between white people and those from ethnic minorities in relation to pay and career progression.
This follows the well publicised gender pay gap reporting obligations which came into force in April this year for companies with 250 or more employees. Given the success of these regulations in raising awareness, which is the first step towards change, I don't believe we need a consultation to decide whether ethnicity pay gap reporting would be a positive step for equality!
However, it will be important to ensure that the regulations are workable and do not place an unnecessary burden on employers and that the information provided is useful and helps to identify the issues that are causing the pay gap which no doubt exists.
The consultation period will run until January 2019.
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The government's Race Disparity Audit last year showed widely varying outcomes in areas including education, employment, health and criminal justice between Britain's white and ethnic minority populations. It found that Asian, black and other ethnic groups were disproportionately likely to be on a low income, with just 1% of non-white police officers in senior roles. Within NHS England, it found that 18% of white job applicants shortlisted got the job, compared with 11% of ethnic minorities.