• On this International Women's Day, INSEE Hauts-de-France published a study on wage inequalities.
  • While the employment rate of women has increased significantly in recent years, the gender pay gap is still very high.
  • This is due, in particular, to a greater use of part-time work and low representation in the most remunerative positions.

We didn't really need INSEE to realize the wage gap between men and women. On the other hand, the study that the institute delivered on this International Women's Day sheds light on the reasons for this difference in treatment in the Hauts-de-France region. Explanations.

Finding the objective reasons for this wage inequality does not deny the discrimination that exists between the sexes in favour of men. On the contrary. Because INSEE starts from a rather positive observation concerning the employability of women, ensuring that between 1990 and 2019, the employment rate of women aged 25 to 54 rose from 56 to 72%. A development that we owe to "strong job creation in the service sector has largely benefited women," says INSEE.

The question of part-time work

On the other hand, women living in Hauts-de-France earn on average 24% less than men. The first reason for this is that they work less. "The use of part-time work concerns 26% of employed women in the region in 2019 against 5% for men," says INSEE based on the latest census information. Less work in companies, but not at home since the institute says that the use of part-time work is necessary for women because they are the ones who take care of the children. In the region, "22% of women in couples with a child under 3 years of age work part-time in 2019", while in an equivalent situation, this concerns only 4.5% of men.

Except that working less does not completely explain the 24% difference in salary. Indeed, INSEE calculated that by neutralizing the effects of part-time work, the wage gap to the disadvantage of women was still 15%. Again, this can be seen as discrimination since this gap is due to the positioning of women at the top of the wage scale. If parity is exemplary if we look at the share of men and women among the lowest wages, the share of women drops radically in the highest wages. The last decile of INSEE's salary scale is 72% men and 28% women. And qualification does not erase inequalities. In Hauts-de-France, a female manager earns on average 17% less than a man with an equivalent qualification.

  • Society
  • Lille
  • Hauts-de-France
  • Women's Rights Day
  • Women's rights
  • Insee
  • Wage inequality