Labor market Extraordinary protest from EK: The organization today leaves a tripartite working group to promote wage transparency

The employers’ organization is leaving the working group for the promotion of equal pay because it believes that the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health has violated the principles of tripartite drafting of laws.

Business the Confederation EK intends today to opt out of the tripartite working group preparing to increase the transparency of wage data in order to improve pay equality. The working group is scheduled to meet at 2 p.m., but will be a representative of the employers’ organization Katja Leppänen tells HS that he is not going to show up.

Leppänen, who has worked at EK for almost 20 years, describes the solution as very exceptional.

“At least I have no information that we have ever left a tripartite working group in the middle of my term,” says Leppänen, who works as an expert for the organization.

A tripartite means that the state, the employer side and the employee side prepare amendments to the law together.

Leppänen According to the organization, the exit of EK is due to the fact that the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health (STM), which leads the working group, violates the principles of tripartite drafting of legislation.

“STM’s Equality Unit has not provided an opportunity to clarify the issue addressed by the working group and weigh the various options, but has in practice decided the outcome in advance. The social partners are only being asked for approval of a decision already made by the ministry itself, and we cannot agree to such a stick horse. ”

According to the government program, “the elimination of unjustified pay gaps and pay discrimination will be promoted by increasing pay transparency through legislation”. According to the government program, the aim is to address the unjustified pay gap between women and men more strictly than at present.

The wage-earning side has been clearly more favorable to the transparency of wage data than the employer side. Currently, a shop steward can ask the Equality Ombudsman to investigate suspected pay discrimination. However, little use has been made of this opportunity, which is why the government wants to increase wage transparency.

EK’s Leppänen says that EK is not completely opposed to increasing the transparency of salary information.

“However, there has been no genuine discussion of the means in the working group. For the second meeting, STM brought the draft law that it was preparing, which would radically increase the transparency of salary information. STM’s attitude is such that this issue has been sufficiently clarified in the past. We disagree. ”

Leppänen does not want to open the details of the ministry’s plan.

Triangular the working group found out increasing wage transparency from early 2019. Even then, the parties differed.

Employer side fears that widespread transparency of wage data would lead to “equalization” of wages: employers would no longer dare to reward better employees for fear of conflict. Transparency of salary information would also make it easier for employees to compete for salary offers. That is also opposed by the employer.

However, Leppänen emphasizes that EK’s protest is not related to the content of the reform planned by the government, but specifically to the working group’s procedure. He says the EK has repeatedly raised its concerns with the Minister for Gender Equality Thomas Blomqvistin (r) information. As the changes desired by the organization in the work of the working group have not taken place, EK leaves the working group.

Leppänen says that EK will be happy to return to the working group if the means of increasing pay transparency are discussed in the working group “in accordance with the normal tripartite principles”.

The working group began its work in August and has a term of seven months.

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