Don’t Discount Our Pay– We Are Worth It
– Salary Negotiations, the Law and the Practice-
Singapore, 1 June, 2013 – About 55 attended a half-day dialogue session recently on 1 June to listen to several speakers discuss and debate on a very interesting topic with regard to the existing pay wage gap between men and women in many countries including Singapore.
Titled “Don’t Discount Our Pay – We Are Worth It; -Salary Negotiations, the Law and the Practice”, the event which was organised by the Young BPW of the Federation of Business and Professional Women (Singapore) (BPW Singapore) and supported by Women’s Register, saw a fair mix of mainly entry and mid-level corporate executives, business owners, students and some gentlemen, who were keen to find out the reasons and contributing factors behind the income inequality between both genders and if so, what could be done to narrow them.
Participants waving the Equal Pay Day tote bags, 1 June 2013
Held on the premise of Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations (SCWO), this was BPW Singapore’s inaugural Equal Pay Day (EPD) event, which is one of the initiatives of the International Federation of Business and Professional Women (BPW International) and among the many EPD events which BPW clubs worldwide have been organising since 2011. In addition, BPW Singapore also followed in the footsteps of its sister clubs by organising its first ever Red Bag Day as part of its global campaign to raise awareness that the women’s accounts are in the red as a result of the economic discrimination women face. The colour red was chosen because it symbolises red numbers and a red bag represents the red numbers in women’s pockets. Mony collected from the sale of second-hand red bags donated by members of the Federation and Equal Pay Day buttons would go towards the Federation’s Education and Development Fund which is used to help finance or sponsor any individual or any meaningful projects.
Speakers included Dr. Bettina Schleicher, Head of the Equal Pay Day Task Force of BPW International and keynote speaker, Dr. Melanie Billings-Yun an international negotiations consultant. Dr. Schleicher who was also the special guest of the event, shared with the audience her experience with starting the Equal Pay Day campaign in Germany and how she was later involved in spearheading the campaign across Europe and now around the world with her topic, “Equal Pay Day – a Global BPW Initiative”. Dr. Billings-Yun who also authored the book Beyond Dealmaking: Five Steps to Negotiating Profitable Relationships equipped the audience with some negotiation tips in her topic “Don’t’ Feed Bears – How to Become a Powerful Negotiator While Using a Soft Voice” and also conducted a role play session with a volunteer based on the skills that she shared in her presentation. Copies of her book, Beyond Dealmaking: Five Steps to Negotiating Profitable Relationships were also made available for sale, and Dr. Billings-Yun also obliged with requests for her autographs made on her books that were sold.
In addition, the audience also got to hear examples on the hiring practices and its realities closer to home from local human resources practitioners Yeo Suan Wei a Director of Profile Search and Selection Asia and Diana Chee an Organisational Coach of Clarion Leadership Asia. In both their speeches titled “How Women Really Negotiate – Real Life Examples from a Headhunter’s Perspective” and “The Pay in-e- Quality” respectively, Ms Yeo who has more than a decade of experience in the recruitment industry specialising in recruiting in the financial services sector under her belt, shared how women really negotiate in the marketplace. Ms Chee on the other hand gave an insight to the hiring and compensation practices from the angle of a very male-dominated industry, and MNCs and based on her experience, felt that women do tend to sell themselves short, resulting in being hired with a salary that is lower down the salary scale. Nevertheless, Ms Chee added that if women prove themselves in the job, it was very possible for them to catch up with their male colleagues quickly.
Mrs Laura Hwang, President of the SCWO also made a special appearance and gave a short inspiring speech. Both Dr Schleicher and Dr Billings-Yun specially flew in for the event.
About The Federation of Business and Professional Women (Singapore)
The Federation of Business and Professional Women (Singapore) was formed in 2001. It is the co-ordinating body of BPW Clubs in Singapore and its members comprise the Singapore Business and Professional Women Association (SBPWA), SBPWA-Mandarin Chapter, and BPWA (Singapore) – Third Chapter. The first SBPWA Club was formed in Singapore in 1972. For information about the Association, visit the Association’s website at www.fbpws.org.sg .
About The Young BPW
BPW members up to the age of 35 automatically belong to the Young BPW.
About Women’s Register
The Women’s Register (WR) is a platform for networking, education, mentorship, inspiration and the promotion of directorships for an extensive group of women of all ages. It is an initiative of the Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations. More information about Women’s Register at www.womensregister.org .
About Equal Pay Day
Equal Pay Day (EPD) symbolises the day until which women have to work longer to earn the same salary as men earned the year before. It is an international campaign of BPW International. More information about EPD at http://equal-pay-day.com/ & http://www.bpw-international.org/equal-pay-day/what-is-epd
About the Pay Gap Situation in Singapore
The Ministry of Manpower’s (MOM) Report on Wages in Singapore for 2011 reveals that the gender wage gap stood at 26.5% and that wage difference was considerably wider in blue-collar occupations. In The Global Gender Gap Report 2012 which was published by the World Economic Forum, Singapore ranked at number 55 out of the 135 countries that were covered in The Global Gender Gap Index 2012 rankings.
About Special Guest Dr. Bettina Schleicher
Dr. Bettina Schleicher is the co-founder of German law firm, Jung & Schleicher in Berlin and specialises and banking law and capital markets. President of BPW Berlin from 2000 to 2004 and president of BPW Germany from 2004 to 2008. Bettina launched the first Equal Pay Day in Germany in 2008 and convinced other organisations to follow. She has been head of the Equal Pay Day Taskforce of BPW International since 2009.
About Keynote Speaker Dr. Melanie Billings-Yun
Dr. Melanie Billings-Yun, author of Beyond Dealmaking: Five Steps to Negotiating Profitable Relationships, is an international consultant on negotiation and strategic influencing.Formerly lecturer at Harvard’s Kenney School of Government, Melanie has spent the last two decades assisting companies, individuals and women’s organisations to achieve their goals to through improved-relationship management.
About Panel Speaker Yeo Suan Wei
Yeo Suan Wei is currently a Director at Profile Search and Selection, an award-winning Asian focused executive search and selection firm. Suan Wei had spent over a decade recruiting in the financial service sector and has focused recently on governance (legal/compliance/risk/audit). She was voted Number 1 Legal and Compliance Headhunting Executive in Asia in 2013 by the annual Asianmoney poll.
About Panel Speaker Diana Chee
Diana is an Organisational Coach of Clarion Leadership Asia. She brings with her more than 15 years of management and professional human resources experience at regional and country levels. Her successful cross-country track records include the Oil & Gas, Chemicals, Logistics, Trading and Manufacturing industries as well as high-growth and sunset industries.
BPW Spain, in cooperation with REM/BPW Costa del Sol and BPW Campo de Gibraltar, and with the support of BPW Europe and BPW International, is organizing the first BPW Spain IC+ congress (International Connecting Plus), in Marbella (Spain) on October 24 and 25.
A 2-day event in which there will be four main panels dealing with economy, culture, leadership and branding. Women empowerment and gender profitability will also be topics of discussion in this mixed congress with business men and women that are expected to come from many different countries.
Each panel will feature a keynote speaker and a discussion panel, in which participants will be able to exchange opinions with the panel members and other participants. Networking workshops are also planned so that all participants make the most of this event by establishing business connections.
Registration is already open, with early-bird prices until July 31.
Live the connecting experience!
Hello BPW Members & Friends,
You are invited to support the following BPW & Rotaract South initiative “Race to End Domestic Violence”, part proceeds go toward the BPW Shelter & Crisis Centre Projects. Registration is just $20. Please encourage those in your network to support the race and wear a purple shirt, orange shirt or purchase a Team Mikey Shirt to show your support of the cause. – M. Burnham, President, BPW Barbados.
In an effort to raise awareness and gain support from the Barbadian public in eliminating all forms of violence against women and children, The Rotaract Club of South Barbados in association with SLAM 101.1 FM radio host Alex Jordan and the Business and Professional Women’s Club of Barbados (BPW) are collaborating to host a 5Km road race; “The Race to END Domestic Violence”, on Olympic Day, June 23rd at 6:00 am in Bridgetown.
Part proceeds will be donated to the BPW’s Shelter, which offers emergency temporary housing to women and children victims of domestic violence. The race is opened to the public and there will be an minimum donation registration fee of $20 for Adults and $10 for Children under 16. More details will be made available on our Facebook page www.facebook.com/RotaractClubOfSouthBarbados, websitewww.run246.com or feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are pleased to announce that UNiTE trained talented local Soca artists Terencia “TC” Coward-Thompson and Michael “Mikey” Mercer will be participating in this road run/walk with Alex Jordan.
The Rotaract Club of South Barbados, a community service club and youth arm of Rotary club of South Barbados; held its inaugural annual race for a charity just last year, “The Race for Challenor”, which raised over $15,000 for the Challenor Creative Arts and Training Centre. These funds aided in the purchase of augmentative and alternative communication devices, telecommunication devices for the hearing impaired and other devices and software to support the development of the students of the school. This year the club decided to partner with Alex Jordan and the BPW to acknowledge the recent frequent occurrences of domestic violence in our society.
UNITED NATIONS — A high-level U.N. panel recommended an ambitious roadmap Thursday to tackle the world’s major challenges, from climate change to equality for women, with a key goal of ending extreme poverty everywhere by 2030.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appointed the panel last year to recommend a new development agenda after the U.N. Millennium Development Goals, or MDGs, expire in 2015. World leaders agreed in 2000 on anti-poverty goals including cutting extreme poverty by half, halting the HIV/AIDS pandemic and increasing the number of people with access to clean water and sanitation.
The extreme poverty and clean water goals have been met, but many other of the goals probably won’t be achieved.
The 27-member U.N. panel expressed “deep respect” for the MDGs, saying: “The 13 years since the millennium have seen the fastest reduction in poverty in human history: there are half a billion fewer people living below an international poverty line of $1.25 a day. Child death rates have fallen by more than 30 percent, with about three million children’s lives saved each year compared to 2000. Deaths from malaria have fallen by one quarter.”
The panel proposed a major expansion of the MDGs — with a special focus on the more than one billion people still living on less than $1.25 a day — to tackle the causes of poverty such as weak government institutions, corruption, a lack of basic freedoms, conflict and hunger.
The panel’s report will kick-start two years of discussions and negotiations on what the development agenda after 2015 should be
The co-chairs, Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and British Prime Minister David Cameron, called it a “bold and practical” proposal with 12 goals and 54 targets.
“Our vision and our responsibility are to end extreme poverty in all its forms in the context of sustainable development and to have in place the building blocks of sustained prosperity for all,” the panel said.
The recommended goals include ensuring food security, sustainable energy and sustainable natural resources management; creating jobs and promoting economic growth and good governance; achieving gender equality and ensuring stable and peaceful societies. Targets include promoting free speech and the rule of law, ending child marriage, protecting property rights, encouraging entrepreneurship and ensuring that every child has at least a primary school education.
Mexico’s former foreign relations secretary Patricia Espinoza, a panel member, said the vision for 2030 won’t be achieved “if the world continues to do business like we have been doing for the last decades.”
U.S. panelist John Podesta, who served as President Bill Clinton’s chief of staff and co-chaired President Barack Obama’s transition team, told a press conference that one of the MDGs’ failings was that it didn’t include proposals to promote the peace and security that world leaders talked about in 2000.
The panel rectifies this by recommending “building blocks” to peace and stability, but Podesta said “more than 40 percent of the extreme poor now live in conflict and conflict-affected states, so until we tackle that problem with real vigor, I think … it’s hard to finish the job.”
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. .