The Equal Pay and Flexible Working Bill has received its second reading in the House of Lords.
The Bill seeks to extend the right to request to request flexible working to parents of children under 16. Currently it is only available to parents whose children are disabled or aged under six.
It also seeks to strengthen obligations on employers who are found guilty of unequal pay practices.
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As the bill proceeds, The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) has called for the government to raise awareness of the business benefits of conducting equal pay audits, rather than making them mandatory.
Charles Cotton, CIPD’s reward adviser, said: “Mandatory systems often become box ticking exercises with an employer in a compliance mind-set, focusing on the minimal solutions to the symptoms rather than meaningful action to address causes and change cultures.”