Why are Salaries Unequally Paid in Ghana?
As a woman, it is absolutely baseless to live this actuality.
I spend the same time as my male colleague honing my skills and perfecting my craft. Yet I am paid less simply because of my gender?
Pinpointing the actual cause(s) of gender pay gaps in Ghana is a tad difficult. Differences in pay gaps can be attributed to many factors including but not limited to the institutionalized traditional roles of men and women in Ghana.
The notion that men are breadwinners and women caregivers has seeped into the work culture so much so that having the required qualifications and skillset is not enough grounds to be equally remunerated as men.
Let us analyze some of these factors together in the succeeding paragraphs.
'Women Have Shorter Careers'
The notion that women work shorter periods than men and that they tend to cut in on their careers is the usual excuse for unequal salaries.
Due to familial situations like the birth of a child or even period cramps, women seemingly spend less time in the office, classroom, or their field of work. Compared to women, men typically have longer active careers and avoid any breaks whatsoever.
Let’s take Fiifi, a 30-year-old man with 6 years of experience in Business Development, and Maria, a 28-year-old Business Development expert with over 8 years of experience in the field.
"The notion that women work shorter periods than men and that they tend to cut in on their careers is the usual excuse for unequal salaries".
Both Fiifi and Mariam are unmarried and are vying for the same position. Despite Mariam’s experience and skillset, she was offered GHS 1,500 less than Fiifi’s proposed salary.
Management’s rationale behind the pay gap is that Mariam may go on maternity leave, request reduced hours to take care of her children, or quit entirely for the same reason. Indeed it’s almost unfair to balk an individual from a job position because of natural occurrences such as childbirth.
Unfortunately, that is the harsh reality of the female labour force in Ghana.