PES Women deliver equal pay demands to Commissioner Jourová

01/03/2017

PES Women delivers demands to Commissioner Jourova

On European Equal Pay Day, 1 March 2017, the Party of European Socialists presented their demands for equal pay between men and women to Věra Jourová, the European Commissioner responsible for gender equality.

The date of European Equal Pay Day represents a calculation illustrating the extent of the pay gap between men and women. For the EU as a whole in 2017, Equal Pay Day is 1 March, meaning that European women would have to work an extra 2 months on average each year in order to earn the same as their male counterparts. The closer the date moves to 1 January, the more equal men’s and women’s salaries have become.

Different individual countries in Europe have different Equal Pay Days. For Belgium, the date is 14 March.

To close the pay gap, PES Women made a series of demands to Commissioner Jourová:

  • to take action to reduce the gender pay gap by two percentage points per country per year across Europe
  • to audit progress regularly at European level
  • to implement sanctions and deterrents with the force of law against countries who persistently fail to meet the target

Zita Gurmai, President of PES Women, said:

“It’s the twenty-first century, yet women still earn less than men for equivalent work. To earn the same over her lifetime, a woman would have to work ten years longer than a man, or start working ten years earlier.
“And recent austerity-only policies are making the problem worse. We are determined to close the gender pay gap, and we call on the Commission to take concrete action to do so.”


PES Women is the organisation within PES that promotes gender equality and women’s representation. Last month it launched the 2017 Equal Pay Day campaign with a controversial short film revealing the little-known secret behind Donald Trump’s famous eloquence.

View the Equal Pay Day 2017 film