Pocket money pitfalls: Gender pay gap for kids?

Does the gender pay gap exist for kids? ABC news asked Australian kids what they think.

We’d all like to think boys and girls are born into this world with an equal shot at life. But for girls, there’s plenty of evidence to suggest the odds aren’t in their favour.

So where does this divide begin? Are we as adults unwittingly perpetuating gender disparities?

Findings from a survey of more than 10,000 Australian primary and high school students, reveal warning signs that gender inequality could be weighing on women much earlier than you might expect.

The Kids Contribute survey, conducted by University of Melbourne researchers with the ABC’s Behind the News program, quizzed students on the ways they help out at home, at school and in the community.

Students were asked questions about how often they helped with things such as looking after family members, the cleaning up, raising money or helping out with school events.

The survey showed almost all children are contributing at home, school and in the community.

“I think it’s important to celebrate how much children are contributing, that they feel good about it and that they’re motivated by wanting to help others,” said Lisa Gibbs, a University of Melbourne researcher analysing the results and director of the Jack Brockhoff Child Health and Wellbeing program.

But it also revealed Australian girls are doing more housework compared to their male counterparts, they’re helping out more at school and are contributing more to local clubs compared to boys.

And, for those who get pocket money as a reward, girls are also being paid less than boys.

Around the house, the survey revealed girls were more likely to help out with all cleaning and caring roles.

For cleaning and tidying up around the house, 60 per cent of girls said they did this regularly (responding “Often” or “A lot”), compared to 50 per cent of boys.

Read more on ABC News story by Mark Doman

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