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Iceland becomes first country to make equal pay mandatory

By Newsd
Updated on :
Source: ABC

Iceland became the first country in the world to force companies to pay equal wages to all employees irrespective of gender, ethnicity, sexuality or nationality.

On International Women’s Day, Iceland government announced a new law that will require every company with 25 or more staff to gain a certificate demonstrating pay equality, Independent reported.

Equality and Social Affairs Minister Thorsteinn Viglundsson said that “the time is right to do something radical about this issue.”

“Equal rights are human rights. We need to make sure that men and women enjoy equal opportunity in the workplace. It is our responsibility to take every measure to achieve that,” he added.

The decision came as a part of the Nordic Nation’s plan to eradicate the gender pay gap by 2022.

Iceland had already introduced a minimum 40 per cent quota for women on boards of companies with more than 50 employees. The country has been ranked best for gender equality by the World Economic Forum.

In October 2016, thousands of female employees across Iceland walked out of workplaces at 2.38pm to protest against earning less than men. According to trade unions and women’s organisations, Iceland women are technically working without any pay after 2:38 pm in a typical eight-hour shift.