Iceland mandates equal pay to cut the pay gap. Of course they do.

Iceland to make companies prove they pay men and women equally.

Oh Iceland! The envy is almost too much to bear.

Not content with being ranked 1st in the world as the most gender equal country in the world and unwilling to accept a seven percent pay gap.

Nope, the Nordic utopia will not rest until gender equity is achieved.

The latest proof lies in a bill introduced in Iceland’s parliament on Tuesday to mandate equal pay by asking employers to prove they pay men and women equally.

If passed, and given it enjoys support from both major parties (envy again!) it’s likely,  it will require public and private businesses to demonstrate they offer equal pay.

“The bill entails that companies and institutions of a certain size, 25 or more employees, undertake a certification of their equal-pay programmes,” Thorsteinn Viglundsson, Minister of Social Affairs and Equality said.  “The gender pay gap is unfortunately a fact in the Icelandic labour market and it’s time take radical measures; we have the knowledge and the processes to eliminate it.”

He admits the law is  “burdensome” but said “the benefits are at the same time obvious.”

Can you even imagine?

A single digit pay gap being deemed so unacceptable as to warrant a bold new law that will inconvenience business?

The benefits of equality being extolled by senior members of government? And not just as platitudes but as actual policies?

That such a bold bill would face a relatively smooth passage into law?

The question on seeing genuine action to enshrine equality and imagining a similar response here in Australia is this: to laugh, cry or move to Iceland?

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