Recently the BBC in the UK released salary details of all their staff earning over £150k(NTD6m) per year, and this reminded me of a personal experience from some years ago.
最近英國廣播公司公佈年薪超過£150k(NTD6m) 員工的名單, 令我想起在英國工作時的親身經歷。
First, let’s take at look at the BBC report. The highest earner Chris Evans is a presenter and radio DJ, and hosted the popular Top Gear programme for one season last year. He was paid between £2.2m – £2.5m (NTD87m – NTD99m) a year. The next person Gary Lineker a sports presenter, was paid between £1.75m – £1.8m (NTD69m – NTD71m). The next 6 people were each paid between £450k – £850k(NTD18m – NTD34m) per year, and guess what? They are all male! The first female to appear on the list is Claudia Winkleman in joint 8th place. She is also a presenter earning between £450k -£500k (NTD18m – NTD20m) per year. Her pay is roughly 20% -25% of the highest earner.
不如先看看這個報告。年薪最高的 Chris Evans是一位主持人和電台 DJ, 曾經主持過熱門資訊節目 Top Gear，他的年薪介乎£2.2m – £2.5m (NTD87m – NTD99m) 。第二位 Gary Lineker是一位運動節目主持人，年薪£1.75m – £1.8m (NTD69m – NTD71m)之間。之後6名單上六位每人年薪都在£450k – £850k(NTD18m – NTD34m)之間。重點是，他們全都是男生!第一位出現在排行榜上的女生Claudia Winkleman 與另一位男生併排第八位，年薪在£450k -£500k (NTD18m – NTD20m) 之間，大概是榜首的 20% – 25%。
This gender pay inequality reminded me of a personal experience from 2010 when I was working in the UK . My old employer used to be the largest private sector employer in the UK, and one day I got a letter out of the blue saying they were going to increase my salary. That’s nice I hear you say. Then I continued to read the letter. They said (I can’t remember the exact words they used) due to the new law “Equality Act” due to come into effect soon, they had to increase my salary to bring it within the salary range for my grade. I always knew the company had salary ranges but the details were only available to line managers so I didn’t know where I was on the scale. The letter continued to say with immediate effect I would get a pay increase of ……. £300(NTD12k) per year! Yes, that’s right, I didn’t miss out a digit by mistake, it’s £300(NTD12k) EACH YEAR. After tax, that’s roughly £15/NTD600 each month.
性別工資不平等這回事，令我想起2010年在英國工作時的親身經歷。當年我工作的公司是英國最大的私營顧主，突然有一天公司發信通知我說要調高我的薪金。聽來應該很開心不錯噢，突然加薪! 繼續看信件，公司說因為新的平等法律即將生效，而我的薪金在薪資級距之下，所以有必要把它調漲到級距內。我一直都知道公司有薪資級距，但詳情只有經理級才知道，所以我從來都不知自己的薪金在級距那一點。信中更提到加薪即時生效，每年加…….£300(NTD12k)! 對呀，你沒看錯我也沒寫錯，是£300(NTD12k)一年。除稅後，每個月剩大概有£15/NTD600。
Compared to my other team members, I had more work experience than some, and I wasn’t the least qualified. So to me, this was a big slap in the face, three times in fact. First, they told me all along I was underpaid compared to my peers. Second, my pay was still at the bottom of the range (of course they wouldn’t have paid me more than necessary). And third, if there wasn’t a new law, would they have addressed the issue? So you see why I say I was slapped three times in the face, £100 each time. Some of you may think I’m being ungrateful, but if I told you that two years later I got a new job with 33% pay rise which was the market rate, then you will understand why I was so annoyed.
Although UK is one if the most advanced countries in the world, gender and race inequality still exists in this day and age. The BBC report is a perfect example and I am sure there are many more companies out there who aren’t so transparent. I’m not a feminist, but I believe in equal pay regardless of gender and race.