Pay Gap Not A Pretend Problem, Union Head Says ({{commentsTotal}})

Peep Peterson
Peep Peterson Source: Photo: Postimees/Scanpix

The pay gap is a real issue and dealing with the matter benefits both men and women, according to Peep Peterson, the head of the Estonian Trade Union Confederation.

Entrepreneur Eugen Veges said on ETV’s program "Vabariigi Kodanikud" on Tuesday that the issue of the pay gap has been raised by well-paid ambitious women who are trying to gain support and stay on the scene, while more important problems are ignored.

Peterson disagreed, saying that low-paid women are a problem for the whole society, because it is connected to issues like the high percentage of boys dropping out of school, criminality, unemployment, health and life expectancy.

“These things are all in one package. It is surprising how much good dealing with this issue does for men, even though it is not understood right now,” Peterson said.

Marre Karu, an analyst at the Praxis Center of Policy Studies, said the pay gap is an indicator of the society in a wider sense, not just the state of salaries, and it is also connected to problems like domestic violence and child poverty.

Karu said the pay gap should not be ignored if Estonia wishes for social and economic progress using the European Union model.