The gender pay gaps at some of the UK’s biggest recyclers have been laid bare.
Countrystyle Recycling was one of many companies forced to reveal gender pay statistics this month under new legislation.
The Kent-based company published figures showing the median hourly rate of its female staff was 23.4% lower than the male equivalent.
Women accounted for just 10% of the upper quartile of earners at the business.
The statistics refer to a snapshot of data from 5 April 2017, and the requirement to publish them applied to all employers with 250 or more staff at that date.
Telford-based outsourced recycling and resource management service provider Reconomy paid its women 21.1% less than men, using the same calculations.
Across the broad sector defined as ’water supply, sewerage, waste management and remediation’, the average median gender pay gap was 6.9% in favour of men.
However, the picture varied by company.
Aggregates firm Day Group, which offers a recycling service, paid women 23.9% more than men, according to its median figures.
East London-based recycler Bywaters had a gender pay gap of 20% in favour of women.
Veolia ES Shropshire and Cotswolds-based Ubico both reported a pay gap of zero – meaning the median man and woman received an equal hourly rate at each company.
Women’s rights charity the Fawcett Society said measures employers could take to close gender pay gaps included offering flexible jobs and asking themselves why women were not being recruited and promoted to high-paid roles.
Chief executive Sam Smethers said: “Gender pay gap reporting is a game-changer in terms of workplace culture and practices. It forces employers to look at themselves and understand their organisations, and it prompts employees to ask some hard questions.
“But even better than that, women are finally realising that they have a right to talk about pay and they cannot be silenced. By finding out what their colleagues earn, they are then in a position to challenge any pay inequality. It is much more common than people realise.”
Countrystyle, Reconomy, Bywaters and Day Group have all been contacted for comment.