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Saint Billinge

Is it still a man's world!

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There is no doubt that having children does impinge on a person's career path. I don't think much can be done about this apart from offering both parents equal opportunities for leave and the option to share the burden as they see fit. I doubt many people that choose to have children are unaware that their career will suffer compared to if they haven't have had children.

I'm pretty cool with the career hit TBH.

We're struggling because both Wendy and I have demanding jobs. We're just about okay as long as nothing goes wrong. But when little one gets a cold and is at home, we're stuffed. There's no contingency in our lives. No spare capacity.

We did a quick audit of all our friends with kids. All the people we know with any kind of permanent, difficult, full time job, have their other half either at home all the time or in a part time job. An example would be my best mate, who is a patent lawyer - a tough, demanding job with long hours. His wife works in an art gallery two days a week and does the bulk of the child care.

The only way one of you won't take a big career hit is if the other looks after the kids or you get help in. I can't see anyway to make it work.

The only couple I know where both are doing a serious job (as in Director of BT type serious job), have a nanny, which seems to me to be a stupid way to bring up your kids. Personally, I think I may have to quit fairly soon and be a full time dad. I could cope very happily with that.

The last point I would make is, for all various governments and moral high horse idiots like to tell single mothers that they are root of all evil, I think that anyone who brings up a half decent kid on their own must be some kind of miracle worker and deserves respect not scorn.

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The problem is that there are many differing scenarios when it comes to work. IMO you cannot simply say 'women get paid the same as men full stop' due to differing environments.

If, a man and a woman are doing exactly the same job and both doing roles of equal responsibility, then logically they should get the same. But say for instance a man and a woman got a job as brickies labourers, the woman shouldn't expect the bloke to do all the physical lifting or hod carrying while she swept up and made tea (not sexist, men have to do this on building sites) and expect the same rate of pay. Or if they do get the same rate the bloke should let her do her share. OK, that's not too likely a scenario at present but the principle will become a bigger issue in years to come I believe. There are only so many lawyer or exec jobs to go round and someone is going to have to do the sh! t shovelling jobs and it will become an issue if some women think they can be excused the heavy, dirty work.

Equal pay for the same job? Absolutely Equal pay regardless of job or scenario? No

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The problem, as I understand it, with many of the legal actions that are being taken against councils on this is that the jobs are not like for like. There are a lot of dinner ladies who feel they should have been paid the same as binmen, and would like to see the money now. But a dinner lady is not a binman.

Binmen and binwomen should be paid the same. As should dinnerladies and dinnermen. But there's no reason why dinnerladies should be paid the same as binmen. Different jobs, different money.

This is an interesting point of view. A binman's/binwomen's job is very demanding out in all weathers. My good wife used to walk round the village in all weathers and in the dark whilst doing her job as a community worker, with her job entailing wiping people's backsides, bathing and dressing them, giving medication, as well as dealing with very heavy people. Not forgetting the physical and verbal abuse dished out from difficult clients. How do you quantify like for like?

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This is an interesting point of view. A binman's/binwomen's job is very demanding out in all weathers. My good wife used to walk round the village in all weathers and in the dark whilst doing her job as a community worker, with her job entailing wiping people's backsides, bathing and dressing them, giving medication, as well as dealing with very heavy people. Not forgetting the physical and verbal abuse dished out from difficult clients. How do you quantify like for like?

Not sure what point you are trying to make. If a man was doing the same job your wife was than they should be getting the same pay. If someone else does a different job, then they may not get the same pay.

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Not sure what point you are trying to make. If a man was doing the same job your wife was than they should be getting the same pay. If someone else does a different job, then they may not get the same pay.

The binmen were on more money but was their job more demanding than that of a community worker?

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The binmen were on more money but was their job more demanding than that of a community worker?

Surely that's a different issue? Maybe they should have had more money than the binmen? Whatever, you can't just say they all get the same.

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The binmen were on more money but was their job more demanding than that of a community worker?

I don't know. If your wife felt it was, why didn't she become a binman?

The answer is that the jobs are not really comparable, which undermines the whole case.

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The binmen were on more money but was their job more demanding than that of a community worker?

Not really relevant to the discussion.

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I don't know. If your wife felt it was, why didn't she become a binman?

The answer is that the jobs are not really comparable, which undermines the whole case.

The cases have been won though. Very occasionally it's the other way round - there was a small group of men who got an award for being underpaid relative to women doing a different job reckoned now to be on the same level.

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Will male tennis players now be able to claim 'damages' for playing more tennis than women at Wimbledon over the years?

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Is that your missus making the observation that the women work harder than the men?

There is no doubt that having children does impinge on a person's career path. I don't think much can be done about this apart from offering both parents equal opportunities for leave and the option to share the burden as they see fit. I doubt many people that choose to have children are unaware that their career will suffer compared to if they haven't have had children.

I have a friend who was in a temporary management post before having a child and was then mightily peeved to learn that someone else had been given the permanent post on her return. I was surprised at her naivety.

Yes it is her assertion. But then I'd back it up by saying I've seen the same in my own employment. Generalisation of course but I'd say that, although doing the same hours, women tend to get more done in that time.

Not that it bothers us because we don't have kids or intend to have any.

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What is going to be interesting is gender equalisation. There will be winners and losers in terms of car insurance, life cover and annuities.

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I think that the inequality is more of an expectation. It is still thought, in many cases that the brunt of child care is the woman's domain. Employers still think woman with children will be off more than men with children. Until that social issue is addressed there will be inequality.

I also think that being a carer for children and male is subject to so many issues that need addressing and that will probaly be the first step.

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I also think that being a carer for children and male is subject to so many issues that need addressing and that will probaly be the first step.

There is a general assumption that it will be women who are doing the caring. The local soft play has "mums and toddlers" groups but never a "dads and toddlers" or even a "parents and toddlers" group for example.

I go along to it sometimes, and am usually the only male over the age of three. Sadly, it is not at all like "About a Boy" and I haven't yet met anyone who looks like Rachel Weisz.

Noone seems to mind that I'm there, but a lot of the discussions are about things I just don't care about (eg breastfeeding) or simply would rather not know about (eg episiotomies). I tend to play with my little one in the ball pool or whatever and leave the women to get on with it.

Thankfully, the days of changing facilities only being in the ladies seem to be largely over. On the odd occasion when I've been caught out by that I've just gone into the ladies loos and got on with it. Noone has ever complained, and if they did I'd tell them to get lost.

There are issues, but I tend to think they're minor compared with the benefits of looking after the little one personally. If a bit of stick and some career trouble stopped me being a father, what kind of father would I be?

I suppose not all fathers would feel the same though.

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Will male tennis players now be able to claim 'damages' for playing more tennis than women at Wimbledon over the years?

I can confirm further down the food chain sexism is alive and well in the sport of tennis - my good lady picks up an awful lot of work not because she's the best qualified coach available but the only female one and for some reason, even when they stay and watch there's more than a few parents don't want men coaching there kids.

There is a general assumption that it will be women who are doing the caring. The local soft play has "mums and toddlers" groups but never a "dads and toddlers" or even a "parents and toddlers" group for example.

I go along to it sometimes, and am usually the only male over the age of three. Sadly, it is not at all like "About a Boy" and I haven't yet met anyone who looks like Rachel Weisz.

Noone seems to mind that I'm there, but a lot of the discussions are about things I just don't care about (eg breastfeeding) or simply would rather not know about (eg episiotomies). I tend to play with my little one in the ball pool or whatever and leave the women to get on with it.

Thankfully, the days of changing facilities only being in the ladies seem to be largely over. On the odd occasion when I've been caught out by that I've just gone into the ladies loos and got on with it. Noone has ever complained, and if they did I'd tell them to get lost.

There are issues, but I tend to think they're minor compared with the benefits of looking after the little one personally. If a bit of stick and some career trouble stopped me being a father, what kind of father would I be?

I suppose not all fathers would feel the same though.

On the odd occasion I've taken my daughter to local play groups, as opposed to play centres, I've found it quite intimidating and I don't intimidate easily! I guess any "newcomer" into a group who meets regulary is viewed with suspecion, it probably just feels more intense when your the only bloke!

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On the odd occasion I've taken my daughter to local play groups, as opposed to play centres, I've found it quite intimidating and I don't intimidate easily! I guess any "newcomer" into a group who meets regulary is viewed with suspecion, it probably just feels more intense when your the only bloke!

You just have to tough it out mate. You never know, you might pull!

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Will male tennis players now be able to claim 'damages' for playing more tennis than women at Wimbledon over the years?

and getting pto rata less prize money than the female players

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You just have to tough it out mate. You never know, you might pull!

No chance - ones enough for me! :)

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