On Equal Pay Day, turn to your colleagues and ask them how much they earn

Tomorrow is Equal Pay Day – the point in the calendar when women start to work for free. (Picture: Mike Kemp / In Pictures via Getty Images)

What is the last great taboo? I know, your mind is wondering about all illicit territory right now is not it? But I want to give you a clue. It's not rude but it's sometimes described as 'distasteful'.

Yes, it's pay.

We are so squeamish about talking about what we are doing.

It could be, you could not do it, you would not know it, you would never know it. You do not even get out of the starting blocks.

For many years my charity, the Fawcett Society, has been campaigning on equal pay and closing the gender pay gap.

On Saturday 10 November it's Equal Pay Day – the point in the calendar when women start working for free. It's calculated on the average average hourly full-time pay between women and men (currently 13.7%).

The gender pay gap is complicated. Dominated senior roles. In the meantime, there are a number of things in the bottom of the ladder.

But another factor is pay discrimination, which is often hidden and facilitated by a culture of pay secrecy or at least pay pay.

Our survey found that about six years ago it was difficult to say what it was about.

Perhaps even more shocking is the fact that it is illegal to pay.

It is almost 50 years since the Equal Pay Act and a significant proportion of us somehow think pay discrimination is ok ?! It makes me want to weep.

So let's get one thing crystal clear. They are doing the same job or work of equal value.

But of course, if you do not know what your male colleagues are doing, how can you possibly challenge it? Your right to equal pay is as good as a chocolate teapot without this basic information.

Interestingly, they would help if they thought they might be experiencing pay discrimination.

So today we are asking you to do one simple thing. Turn to your colleagues and tell them what you earn. Men, if there is one favor you could do for your female colleagues this is it.

more: Money

If you do not think you are being paid then you need legal advice. If you are in a trade union, then they may be able to help you. But many women do not have that option.

Carry Gracie's BBC back-pay, Fawcett has joined forces with YESS Employment Law to offer a new Equal Pay Advice Service at Women's earning £ 30k per year or less with Equal Pay Fund to raise money to sustain it longer-term.

They are owed their money.

More than money, this is about equality, fairness and justice. And frankly, it's about time.

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