Even after decades, there is a lot ofdiscriminations based on gender still happening in our society.
The gender wagegap is one of them. The gender wage gap is the average difference between wagereceived by men and women. The main causes of gender wage gap is educationattainment, occupational segregation, sexual discrimination, maternity leave andwomen tend to not negotiate for raises and promotions aggressively. The reasonwhy is that occurs in Indonesia most likely due to the cultural aspects thatsupport it. According to Wage Indicator (2016), thesocial assumption that men are the one whose earnings are the primary source ofsupport for their dependents, while women deal with housework and family, isexceptionally solid in Indonesian society.
This patriarchy culture ofIndonesian society to support women not to work allegedly reflects thecontribution of Indonesian women in the labor market. As evidenced by reportsfrom the International Labor Organization, only about 50 to 55 percent of womenin Indonesia participate in the labor force. As a result, when women areworking, their position is assumed to be merely that of an ‘extra’ provider. Thewage paid to men is bigger than the wage paid to women because he is expectedto provide his wife and children a decent life. While female laborers, evenwhen married, are also legally still considered single. The World EconomicForum’s Gender Gap Index (2016) data shows Indonesia has a gender wage gap of14.5%, meaning that on average Indonesian women earn 14.5% less than men.
Withthat amount of gap, needs a long time to closing the gender wage gap.The gender wage gap is disadvantage forwomen, it suppressing their income and making it even difficult to balance workand family. Serious attempts to understand the gender wage gap should notdriven to the blame to women for not earning more. Instead, these attemptsshould be to analyze in which sector our economy provides unequal opportunitiesfor women at every point of their education, training, and career choices. Although in 2007 to 2013 Indonesia wasrecorded by the World Bank as a country with a high minimum wage increase forlaborers, with average 13 percent increase per year in Southeast Asia, butthere is still a wage gap seen from a gender perspective. Women workers’ wage incomeis always lower than men’s wages.
If the wage of female laborers is only Rp.2.4million, the wages for male laborers can reach Rp.2.9 million. Central Bureau of Statistics (BPS)recorded the average wage paid to female laborers in February 2017 was lower by23 percent compared to the average wage male laborers earn.
The head of BPS, Suhariyanto (2017), saidthat the female laborers’ wage is lower in almost all job sectors except electricity,gas and water sector. The highest wage gap between male and female laborersoccurred in the agricultural sector which reached 41 percent, where the averagewage paid to men reach Rp.1.
92 million while women’s wage is only Rp.1.13million. This wage gap is thought to be due todifferences in working time, education, and discrimination. In addition, withlow salaries, women workers also often receive violence from employers, bothdomestic and foreign workers. The International Labor Organization (ILO)regulates it in Convention no.100 on equal remuneration in 1951.
ThisConvention no.100 supports equal pay for men and women laborers for equal work.In 1957, Indonesia has ratified the Convention no.
100 of ILO to Law act no. 80of 1957 on the Agreement of the International Labor Organization Convention no.100 on Wages for Male and Female Workers for Equal Work.The non-discriminatory prohibitioncontained in the Indonesian Labour Law is based on Article 27 of the 1945Constitution regarding the status of citizens without discrimination. While thegender wage gap prohibition is regulated in the Government Regulation act no. 8of 1981 regarding the wage protection, which affirms that there is nodiscrimination in determining wages between male and female laborers for equalwork.
Some of the special rights for femalelaborers contained in Law act no. 13 of 2003 :1. Article 81. Women who are on a periodand feeling sick (and then tell about it to the employers), permitted to not togo to work on the first and second day of menstruation.2.
Article 82 (1). Women entitled to get atime to rest for one and a half months before giving birth and one and a halfmonths after it (according to the calculation by obstetrician or midwife).3.
Article 82 (2). Women who suffer frommiscarriage are entitled to get a rest for one and a half months or depends onthe reference given by obstetrician or midwife.4. Article 83. Women entitled to get atime to breastfeed their children if it should be done during worktime.Despite the law stated above, there arestill employers or companies that violates these rules.
For example, some employersare obedient to the menstrual leave rights but they make it difficult for thefemale laborers by require references from the local clinic (stating that theworkers are really on their menstrual periods) to get some time off work duringmenstruation. Some others even do not even give any day off work, because theysaid that it is reducing the companies’ productivity.Thereis also a case that violates the maternal leave rights, in a company, pregnantwomen are considered to have resigned by the company, rather than being granteda three-months leave. The company does not want to give wages to a fullypregnant female worker, because it means a 9 months of paid leave, which isdisadvantage for the company.
It is easy for the company to impose that kind ofpolicy because the contract work system and outsourcing has been legalized inIndonesia. In this case, if there are female laborers who are pregnant, theysimply discontinued from their contract of work. Thus, the company will bespared from its obligation to provide wages and maternal leave to femaleworkers, without being sued by the worker for violating the rights. As it is knownthat in the Labor Law Article 153, employers are prohibited from laid offworkers who are pregnant, childbirth, miscarriage, or breastfeeding.
However, thecompany has a policy that the female worker will be declared resigned if she ispregnant, then the Article 153 is not working anymore.