Our President, Justice Hatcher, has issued a statement announcing the publication of a research report titled, Gender-based Occupational Segregation: A National Data Profile undertaken by the Social Policy Research Centre at the University of New South Wales.
This report is part of the Commission’s research project on occupational segregation and gender undervaluation that was announced in an earlier statement by our President in February 2023. The research project was also discussed in the Annual Wage Review Decision 2022-23.
The report examines current patterns of segregation in Australia using a data-driven approach. The UNSW researchers analysed data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics 2021 Census and the 2021 Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours. The researchers identified 144 detailed occupational classifications of any size where women comprised of over 60% of the workforce, and together employed nearly 4.7 million workers. However, the report focuses on a subset of 29 large (containing over 10,000 people) highly feminised occupations (over 80% female) in feminised industries (over 60% female) that employ over 1.1 million workers, constituting over 9% of the workforce. The report suggests that there are 13 modern awards used to set pay in these 29 large, highly feminised occupations.
The President’s statement notes that stage 2 of the research project will be informed by the data profile in the Stage 1 report. The statement also notes that the stage 1 report and, dependent on timing, the Stage 2 report, will be considered in the Annual Wage Review 2023-24.