A Melbourne café has caused a serious stir with a new concept to raise awareness of the gender wage gao.
Sydney Road’s Handsome Her, which openedthis month, charges men 18% more than women to reflect the gender pay gap.
House rules are implemented one week out of every month:
“House Rules, Rule #1: women have priority seating. Rule #2: men will be charged an 18% premium to reflect the gender pay gap (2016) which is donated to a women’s service. Rule #3 respect goes both ways.”
The goal of the café is to help women in need – it also hopes to open a conversation about the gender pay gap.
“I do want people to think about it, because we’ve had this (pay discrepancy) for decades and decades and we’re bringing it to the forefront of people’s minds. I like that it is making men stop and question their privilege a little bit,” owner Alex O’Brien told Broadsheet.
“One of my friends who works for a not-for-profit women’s service was talking about the pay gap and I thought it was a good idea, so we decided that one week every month we would charge men an 18 per cent premium, which we will donate,”
While some people have called the rules discriminatory, the owners admit they will waive the fee if anyone causes a fuss.
Research in 2016 by Australia’s Workplace Gender Equality Agency found the average difference between a male and female’s full-time weekly wage to be 17.7 per cent, or $261.30, each week.