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Women earn 30 percent less than men, says CBS report
By Lidar Gravé-Lazi,NIV ELIS
03/04/2014
Only a third of hi-tech workforce is female; women earned 66.1 percent of the average male salary, according to Central Bureau of Statistics report.
 
The average monthly salary in 2012 was NIS 10,953 for men compared to NIS 7,244 for women – meaning women earned 66.1 percent of the average male salary.

These figures were taken from a Central Bureau of Statistics report released on Tuesday ahead of International Woman’s day.

The rate of labor force participation of women aged 15 and up was 58.2% in 2013, compared to 69.4% for men; whereby the percentage of women employed full-time (35 hours or more) was 66.7%, compared to 86.6% of men. Furthermore, according to the findings, in 2012, 51.4% of salaried employees were men and 48.6% were women.

Part of the reason for the wage gap, the report states, is that men worked an average of 44.9 hours a week, compared to 35.8 hours worked by women. Men earned an average of NIS 57.9 per hour, compared to NIS 48.9 for women.

“It is unbelievable that in Israel 2014 there is a 30% gap between wages of men and women in the same role, with the same education, with the same experience, with the same seniority in the same position,” MK Aliza Lavie (Yesh Atid) said.

In 2013, 96,000 women worked in hi-tech, accounting for 35.6% of all workers, the report also said.

Throughout the economy, men were twice as likely to be managers as women (67.4% to women’s 32.6%).

About a third of all women worked in traditionally female occupations such as nursing, retail sales, bookkeeping, teaching, and as secretaries. Women comprised about two-thirds of all workers in those fields.

Part of the gap comes because women do most of the work in taking care of their children and providing their education.

“It’s not a women’s issue, it’s a social issue in Israel, educating our children,” said Lavie.

Maxine Fassberg, president of Intel Israel, said her company has to take special measures to ensure its female employees can take care of their children. In other countries, where transportation is set up to take children to readily available daycare after school, such intervention is not necessary to help women work high-powered jobs with long hours.

“In hi-tech you are required to work crazy hours,” Globes economic analyst Korin Lieber said in an interview with Army Radio. “The workers only dare leave when the CEO turns out the lights, and women who want to start a family cannot do that.”

Another issue, said Fassberg, was the low representation of girls in math and science programs in Israeli education.

“What we want won’t happen without a serious change in the educational sphere,” she said told the Knesset Channel in an interview.

The Knesset Research and Information Center compiled a report released by the Committee for the Advancement of Women and Gender Equality ahead of a Conference for the Economic Empowerment of Women on Tuesday.

The report drew upon the statistics from the CBS report, as well as figures from the National Insurance Institute and past Knesset reports.

According to the findings, among pension recipients who received more than NIS 7,500 a month, some 70% were men and some 30% women. In contrast, among pensioners who received less than NIS 3,000 a month, some 70% were women, and some 30% men.

“The sad condition of pension aged women living off of old-age allowances or from meager pensions reflects the cultural environment in which their mothers lived, who sacrificed their lives to raise families in all their glory and the vast majority did not promote themselves and did not worry for their futures, but rather settled for part-time work in lowly positions with little pay,” said Lavie.

The Knesset report revealed statistics from a 2012 National Insurance Institute report showing that poverty rates among women were higher than among men. Following taxes and transfer payments the gaps greatly narrowed, though the incidence of poverty among women remained 1.5% greater on average than among men.

The findings indicated that among the main working ages of 30 to 60 years old, following taxes and transfer payments there was almost no difference in the incidence of poverty among men and women. However, when comparing the over 60 age group, there was a marked incr ease in the poverty gap between men and women, especially in the over 70 age group, where the poverty rate among women was 4% higher (following taxes and transfer payments) than among men.

“As we look at the generation of our mothers and grandmothers, we must first take care of their welfare so that we can look them in the eye,” Lavie said.

“The second lesson [we must take from this report] is that we must forge ahead and utilize all our talents and even demand and receive fair compensation, otherwise we, too, will be poor women in need of support,” she said.
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