It still takes many people by surprise that women at work earn half as much as men on average.
"Is it still as little as that?" asks Dinah Bennett, programme director of Women into the Network at Durham Business School. "I thought it was nearer 60pc by now."
But no - figures from the Department of Trade and Industry, just out, show that average income for women, including part-time and home workers, was pounds 145 a week in 2001-2 against pounds 287 for men.
Patricia Hewitt, the Trade and Industry Secretary, says: "It is well known that women's income declines after they have children. This is because they are either forced out of the labour market, due to the lack of workplace flexibility, or have to take less skilled jobs to work family-friendly hours."
Little wonder, then, that women are more likely than men to be poor throughout their lives, according to a recent report by the Trades Union Congress.
It found nearly two-thirds of women had a sub-average income, compared with just over half of the adult male population. …