Monday, October 16, 2006

We don't think this means what you think it means

Italian women earn less than men for pretty much the same reason as everywhere else, but you have to read to nearly the end to find out why:

(ANSA) - Rome, October 16 - Italy's working women earn about three quarters of what men earn on average, according to new statistics from ISFOL, the government-funded research institute.

For salaried workers women the difference is about 23%, or 3,800 euros a year, while for the self-employed the difference can be as much as 40%....

Self-employed women pay themselves 40% less, because....

The startling difference between the pay received by self-employed men and women was mainly the result of women working fewer hours, the report said .

Which fact seems not to have penetrated with the author of this article who explains the smaller difference in pay for employees with the usual suspects:

"There is a tendency to avoid giving roles with more responsibility to women basically because employers are afraid that childcare duties will be a distraction," said Emiliano Mandrone.

He said this was particularly common in the private sector, where bosses were concerned that women would either underperform or disappear for a year to have a baby.

As a result, men tend to get the top jobs and the fat salaries that go with them .

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