easyJet exec Johan Lundgren’s move is part of a push to close the company’s gender gap
That’s some business class.
The CEO of British airline easyJet will take a voluntary salary cut to match his female predecessor’s pay, the company announced this week. As part of a push to address the company’s gender pay gap, exec Johan Lundgren will reduce his £740,000 ($1,046,000) starting salary to £706,000 ($998,100), the amount Carolyn McCall made when she left the company.
“At easyJet we are absolutely committed to giving equal pay and equal opportunity for women and men,” Lundgren said in a statement. “I want that to apply to everybody at easyJet and to show my personal commitment I have asked the board to reduce my pay to match that of Carolyn’s when she was at easyJet.”
easyJet has a stunning 51.7% gender wage gap, according to mandatory figures submitted to the UK government last year. That disparity is driven by the company’s dramatic gender imbalance: Its pilots, who earn an average salary of £92,400 ($130,600), are 94% men. Its cabin and crew, which make £24,800 ($35,060) on average, are 69% women.
To close that gap, the company in 2015 launched its “Amy Johnson Initiative” to boost the number of women pilots. easyJet says it brought in 49 female new-entrant co-pilots in the 2017 financial year, a 48% increase in its numbers for the previous year. Its latest goal: for one-fifth of pilots to be female by 2020.
“I also want to affirm my own commitment to address the gender imbalance in our pilot community which drives our overall gender pay gap,” Lundgren said. “easyJet has already gone further than other airlines in trying to attract more women into a career as a pilot. I want us not just to hit our target that 20% of our new pilots should be female by 2020 but to go further than this in the future.”
The UK’s overall gender wage gap for full-time workers’ median hourly earnings was 9.1% in April 2017, according to the Office of National Statistics, down from 9.4% the previous year. Meanwhile, full-time working women in the U.S. made 81.3% of men’s median weekly earnings in the fourth quarter of 2017, per the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
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