Press release

Essex County Fire and Rescue Service almost closes its Gender Pay Gap

Crest NEW

A newly published report has shown that Essex County Fire and Rescue Service’s gender pay gap has almost closed over the last year.

The report shows that in 2023, the average gender pay gap has been steadily reducing since ECFRS began reporting in 2018.  On average this means that there is a 2.8% pay gap (median) which is significantly lower than the UK national average.

According to the Office of National Statistics*, the UK’s national average gender pay gap for full-time workers is 7.7%.

Gender pay gap measures the difference in average earnings across all employees across the organisation. This means that every employee at every level is grouped together and an average is worked out for both men and women. This is different to equal pay, which is where men and women are paid equally for an equal role. ECFRS uses a clear pay scale to identify salary, and there is equal pay for equal roles across the organisation.

Director of People Services, Colette Black said:

“In Essex County Fire and Rescue Service, equal roles are equally paid no matter who you are.

“I’m proud of the work we’ve done as a Service over the last year towards closing our gender pay gap. We have a gender pay gap of 2.8% (median) or -1% (mean).  This means that women earn 97p for every £1 men earn when comparing median pay or, when comparing mean pay, women earn 1% more than men. 

“We can confidently say our non-discriminatory pay process results in equal pay.

“When we began reporting in 2018 the gap was 15.6%. This huge decrease is a testament to the work we’ve done in creating a more diverse workforce, which is a key factor in reducing the gender pay gap. 

“We will continue with a programme of positive action in recruitment in our commitment to achieving a workforce that is more reflective of our communities.

“We will continue to work with our employee networks, partners and stakeholders to gain feedback and understand how we can bring about positive change based on feedback from colleagues.

“Our most recent change was to enhance maternity leave and pay, which sees full pay for the first 26 weeks, and is a prime example of where our diversity networks have championed positive change within our Service which will make a real difference to people’s lives.”

Roger Hirst, Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex, said: “I’m pleased to see the median gender pay gap at ECFRS, now 2.8%, is significantly lower than the UK national average for full time work at 7.7%.

“I’m also pleased to note the progress which has been made since 2018, when the reported gender pay gap was 15.6%.

“This is a firm step toward gender pay equality. However, we recognise there is still more to do. We have a clear aspiration to be among the best fire and rescue services in the country and we will continue to work with all partners to achieve that aim.”


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