Scottish Government has UK's smallest gender pay gap in top civil service jobs

Disparity of just 0.6% in senior public sector roles is in stark contrast to UK central government departments

The Scottish Government is putting the rest of the UK to shame when it comes to the gender pay gap by having the smallest difference between men and women in top public sector jobs.

The disparity of just 0.6 per cent in senior civil service roles is in stark contrast to UK central government departments where women are, on average, paid 6.3 per cent less than men. 

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs is the only ministry where women are paid more than men, while the Department for Energy and Climate Change has the biggest pay gap in Whitehall - women in DECC’s senior team are paid, on average, almost 17 per cent less than their male counterparts.

The Welsh Government has women’s pay an average of 4 per cent lower than their male counter-parts, according to research by accountants EY.

Despite the differences, the UK ranks fourth in the G20 on the proportion of women among its senior central government officials with 38.7 per cent. Canada tops the table (46.1 per cent), while Australia comes second (40.1 per cent) and South Africa third (39.8 per cent).

Neil MacLean, Head of Government and Public Sector at EY in Scotland, said: “These figures prove Scotland is edging closer to eliminating the gender pay inequality and sets a fine example. However, disparity still exists in Scotland and the wider UK despite the introduction of the Equal Pay Act proving legislation alone isn’t enough.”

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