Gender Pay Gaps - the LLDC and the wider built environment industry

MQT on 2016-12-14
Session date: 
December 14, 2016
Question By: 
Navin Shah
Labour Group
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


The persistence of a gender pay gap within the built environment industries is particularly acute. As the Mayor's recent gender audit revealed, although women form 65.5% of the LLDC's workforce, the pay gap within that functional body is a huge 35%. How can the Mayor work through his agencies and with London's construction, property and design sectors to increase female representation at the top of these industries crucial to our city's growth?        


Answer for Gender Pay Gaps - the LLDC and the wider built environment industry

Answer for Gender Pay Gaps - the LLDC and the wider built environment industry

Answered By: 
The Mayor

Sadiq Khan (Mayor of London):  Thank you for your question.  As a proud feminist, it is very important to me to ensure that women have the right opportunities to succeed at work in all sectors in London.  It is unacceptable that in 2016 in London, the most progressive city in the world, your gender determines how much you get paid and your career prospects.


I am leading by example and that is why within my first few months in office I commissioned a gender pay audit across the GLA group.  The audit highlighted the worrying gender gap at the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC), as you made clear, and I am determined to make significant changes at the LLDC as soon as possible, as I am across the entire GLA group.  From now on I will expect all GLA group bodies to produce action plans to reduce the gender pay gap and my equalities framework will make it clear that I expect the GLA group to make year-on-year improvements in reducing the gender pay gap.


These improvements include such measures as name-blind recruitment, which the GLA introduced this week.  On the LLDC specifically I will be making appointments to the board next year.  I will ensure they will deliver an agenda-balanced board.  The LLDC will also finalise an agenda pay action plan shortly.  They are introducing unconscious biased training, developing flexible working options, reviewing the titles of roles and advert wording to ensure they are encouraging applications from women, developing leadership and management development programmes and taking a range of other actions to reduce the pay gap.


Beyond the GLA group I am determined to encourage exemplary employment standards in businesses of all sizes and sexes across London and my Economics Fairness Team is working on a business compact that I referred to before.  The Construction Academy Scheme will promote the construction sector to young Londoners to ensure they understand the progression opportunities and pathways available to them.


Navin Shah AM:  Thank you, Mr Mayor, for your plans to promote and implement equal pay policy right across the GLA functional bodies, and of course including the LLDC.


The Cultural and Education District at Olympic Park has an impressive list of world-leading education and cultural partners with huge plants which will create like 3,000 jobs and I think it is worth something like £2 billion-plus to the local economy.  Given that situation that there are major projects in the pipeline as well, it is important that LLDC and all organisations behind such development do very strictly have policies to ensure that the current situation does not exist.  Compared to the rest of the GLA functional bodies LLDC’s statistics when it comes to women’s pay are quite appalling.


Can you please make sure and let us know what LLDC’s plans are?  You mentioned the GLA developing its own self-consultation on this particular issue and can we make sure that LLDC has that programme that you mentioned?  I will be very keen to know what the timetable and the situation is on this.


Sadiq Khan (Mayor of London):  Absolutely.  One of the reasons why Deputy Mayor [for Social Integration, Social Mobility and Community Engagement] Matthew Ryder is working so hard on the equalities framework is to address all the different sectors you referred to, not just gender but race, religion, age, sexual orientation and the other issues that we know about, and disability as well.  We need to get it right.  It goes back to your question that you asked earlier on.  We are not tapping the potential of all Londoners if we fail to do so.  It is an economic case as well as a moral and social case.


Navin Shah AM:  Absolutely.  In addition to LLDC my question now refers to the wider-built environment.  Again, it is important that our current situation does not persist in terms of peer gap, so I would be quite interested in following how your Construction Academy Scheme is working out in real terms because there are huge opportunities to stop the current unacceptable practices and anything that you can do and any schemes that you are implementing would be very welcome and much needed.


Sadiq Khan (Mayor of London):  On that, the good news is the construction sector agrees with you.  We are working with the Academy.  Despite the construction sector having a good proportion of women in senior positions, the number of women employed is low, 13% nationally.  Bear in mind 50% of the country’s population is women.  That is not good enough.


Navin Shah AM:  No, that normally is right across the board.  Going back to the LLDC, for example, a good proportion of women are within the workforce but the gender gap is the worst when you compare it to the rest of the functional bodies we have.  That is a major challenge and we have opportunities to get rid of this anomaly.


Sadiq Khan (Mayor of London):  Thank you.


Navin Shah AM:  Thank you, Chairman.