France awarded top score on gender equality [fr]
Feminist diplomacy – France, world champion of gender equality –
Press release issued by the Minister of State for Gender Equality and the Fight against Discrimination
Paris, 28 February 2019
100 out of 100. This is the score the World Bank awarded France yesterday on the release of its new index: "Women, Business and the Law: A Decade of Reforms".
The World Bank analysed eight criteria to assess the ability of the 187 countries taking part to guarantee women strictly equal rights with men.
For France, the verdict is clear. Thanks to its recent reforms on equal pay between women and men and thanks to cross-government public policies and a legal arsenal addressing the matter which are constantly being developed, France guarantees strictly equal rights for women and men.
In Washington in January 2019, as part of the feminist diplomacy France has been conducting since March 2018, Marlène Schiappa, Minister of State for Gender Equality and the Fight against Discrimination, met Kristalina Georgieva, Chief Executive Officer of the World Bank, who had already praised France’s efforts over the past two years.
Gender equality is the great national cause of the presidential five-year term. Equal rights are a decisive milestone in the cultural battle ahead of us: to achieve genuine equality between all women and men
Headlined as a national worthy cause by the President of the Republic for the five-year term and championed by the Government, gender equality in the workplace requires involvement across the board.
In May 2018, after 4 months of talks with social partners, Édouard PHILIPPE, Prime minister, Muriel PÉNICAUD, Minister of Labour, and Marlène SCHIAPPA, Minister of State for Gender Equality and the Fight against Discrimination, unveiled an overall plan of action to combat sexual and gender-based violence, and put paid to the gender pay gap.
The legislative measures have been adopted in the Act for the freedom to choose one’s future occupation, enacted on 5 September 2018.
More than 46 years after the establishment of the "equal pay for equal work" principle between women and men, there is still a 9% pay gap, across all jobs. This gap rises to 25% towards the end of careers, and to 37% when the time comes to calculate retirement pensions.
A flagship measure of the plan: equal pay between women and men in companies will no longer be subject to just an input-based obligation, but to an output-based obligation based on 4 main criteria:
1. Gauge: through a gender equality index with 5 indicators
2. Transparency: each company will publish its results on its website
3. Five corrective measures: each company will have 3 years in which to close the pay gap
4. Inspection: companies that have not closed the pay gap within 3 years could be fined up to 1% of their wage bill