Lancashire Constabulary believe in empowering women, ensuring equal opportunities for all and are committed to creating an organisation that is reflective of the communities we serve. We have already taken steps to achieve this but we acknowledge that we have further work to do to reduce the gender pay gap.
Therefore, we welcome the introduction of gender pay gap reporting.
What is the gender pay gap?
The gender pay gap shows the difference in the average hourly pay of all men and women across an organisation. The gender pay gap is not the same as equal pay, which would involve comparing the salary of a man and woman undertaking the same role or work of an equal value.
Figures as of 31st March 2017. The mean gender pay gap is the difference in the ‘average’ hourly pay for women within an organisation compared to that of men. The median gender pay gap is the difference between the ‘middle’ hourly pay rate for women compared to the ‘middle’ hourly pay rate for men if you listed them separately from lowest to highest pay.
In 2016/17, only 20 people received a bonus payment representing less than 0.4% of the organisation. A bonus is paid to officers as a one-off payment in recognition of where they have performed work of an outstandingly demanding, unpleasant or important nature.
There are approximately 1250 employees in each quartile.
Understanding our gender pay gap
As of the snapshot date of 31st March 2017, our mean gender pay gap was 15.4% and our median gender pay gap was 24.7%.
We know that a significant reason for our gender pay gap is the structure of our workforce and the lack of equal gender representation in the two very different roles within our organisation, police officers and police staff.
The police force has historically had a significantly higher proportion of male employees than female, specifically in police officer roles, whose pay rates are typically higher than police staff. Whilst the proportion of female police officers has increased in recent years, we still do not have gender parity as females make up just over a third of our police officers. Furthermore, women make up 66% of our police staff, whose pay rates are typically lower than that of a police officer.
Consequently, this lack of equal gender representation across police officers and police staff will skew our total gender pay gap figures. Therefore, it is important to highlight that the pay gap is significantly less when we look separately at different job types within the police force
Women’s median hourly rate when compared to men for Police Officers is 1.9% lower, for Police Staff it is 0.2% lower, there is no gap for Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) and for Police Control Room Operators (PCROs) women earn 12.2% higher than men.
Nonetheless, we do not shy away from the fact that there is still a gender pay gap in these areas and, from initial analysis, we believe that some of the reasons that could be contributing to this are:
- there is a lower representation of women in higher paid roles and ranks
- more women have a ‘flexible working arrangement’ which in turn can reduce or cease allowances that they would otherwise be entitled to (e.g. unsocial hours allowance)
- women are more likely to purchase additional annual leave which reduces their hourly pay
How are we addressing the pay gap?
Our gender pay gap demonstrates that we need to focus on the lack of equal gender representation in different ranks and roles within our police force. It also highlights that we need to identify and overcome any barriers that may prevent women from progressing throughout their careers. Our strategy to reduce the gap will focus on the following key areas:
It is important that we conduct further analysis to understand more about what causes our gender pay gap so we can identify additional ways to address this.
Recruitment and Progression
In our most recent police officer campaign, we have had a significantly higher proportion of women applicants when compared to previous campaigns and we now typically recruit around 40% female police officers.
However, representation reduces at the higher ranks and we plan to deliver positive action, coaching and mentoring to provide support to prospective female applicants and encourage more women to seek out these promotion opportunities.
We have an active women’s network, Inspire, which was launched in 2005 and its purpose is to encourage women to achieve their full potential in policing.
They have been actively involved in making many positive changes for women in policing and these include changes to flexible working practices, helping women pass the Job Related Fitness Test and assisting many female officers in their own personal development and in promotion boards.
As part of a new initiative, employees involved in recruitment and promotion processes now receive ‘Unconscious Bias’ training.
This training aims to encourage staff to consider the impact that their unconscious biases towards people who are similar to them could have on achieving an inclusive and diverse workforce.
Lancashire Constabulary's Commitment
We recognise that reducing the gender pay gap will not be a quick fix, but we remain committed to this work and making sure the Constabulary is inclusive, diverse and supportive of everyone so they can achieve their full potential and represent and serve our local communities well.