Equality is difficult to achieve, but Plaid Cymru is committed to it
On International Women’s Day, Rhun ap Iorwerth has warned that without targeted effort, women will continue to be held back from reaching their economic potential.
Rhun ap Iorwerth said that women on average earn almost 20% less than men, and are underrepresented in high-earning growth sectors and over-represented in sectors where low pay and under-employment are common.
Rhun ap Iorwerth said that Plaid Cymru’s plans to offer up to 30 hours of free high quality childcare a week was an important step in allowing families the freedom to work. But that must be supported by efforts to encourage women into all sectors of the economy, to raise the visibility of women in non-traditional occupations and senior roles, and to improve careers advice so that women recognise the paths open to them.
Plaid Cymru Shadow Economy Minister Rhun ap Iorwerth said:
“Research tells us that women make up two-thirds of the low paid employees in Wales. This isn’t down to a lack of ability, but a lack of opportunity. It’s clear that circumstances mean that women are held back from reaching their economic potential, and this is something that we need to stop.
“We know that a lack of affordable childcare is a big problem for families and that’s why Plaid Cymru has pledged education for all children from the age of three. This will save families on average £100 per week, and will give them greater flexibility in seeking work.
“But we must also tackle the perception of women in the workplace, breaking the stereotypes that exist and increasing the visibility of women in non-traditional occupations and senior roles. We need to actively encourage women to follow careers in key growth areas.
“Equality is difficult to achieve, but Plaid Cymru is committed to working towards this goal and challenge stereotypes until they cease to exist.”