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Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Volume. 33, Number 13. 1970

Equal Pay

Equal Pay

In contrast, the arguments for the comparatively much more acceptable objective of equal pay as presented by Mrs King, Chairwoman of the Council for Equal Pay and Opportunity, and a leader of the New Zealand female establishment proved very hard to implement. Mrs King and her Council, in their thirteen years of existence, have only achieved, early in their endeavours, equal pay for public servants with the qualification that certain conditions presupposed equality e.g. length of service. Thus the average working woman for the public service still receives a lower salary than the average public servant. (Mrs King in her address forgot to mention that equal opportunity had got lost somewhere along the way.) The moral of all this, she told an incredulous audience, was that women would have to work harder at their jobs before they could expect equality. Most of the women present seemed to have heard similar advise from their employers, but did not expect to hear it from the female equivalent of a Federation of Labour leader. Abortion had been legalised in Britain by the relatively reactionary membership of the British Labour Party, while in New Zealand equal pay was being shelved by the male power elite's token women. These two facts, plus the open admission of loss of public support for this basic demand, are enough to turn any serious movement for women's freedom revolutionary.