In the last quarter of 2022, the rate of female employment, for women aged between 20 and 64, was 55% in Italy.
A study by the Lower House department of studies published on Monday, places Italy at the bottom of the league in Europe for female employment. It showed that only 55% of women in Italy aged 20-64 were in employment.
In the same quarter the average female employment across the European Union stood at 69.3%.
The study also found that one in five Italian women abandon the labour market after having children. This should please the right-wing MP Lavinia Mennuni who said young women should aspire first to be mothers.
On national level, the House studies department reported “there is also a gap in the ratio between men and women in the world of work”. There are about 9.5 million women in employment in the reference period compared to 13 million men.
In terms of pay, the average hourly pay gap – namely the difference in gross hourly earnings between men and women – in Italy is 5%, below the European average of 13%. However, the overall pay gap – namely the difference between the average annual salary earned by men and women – is 43%, above the European average of 36.2%, added the study based on Eurostat data.
Siena bucks the trend
An equal opportunities call for new engineers in the Tuscan city of Siena specified it just wanted male applicants. The Renaissance city famed for the medieval Palio horse race has considerably more female council engineers already.
Siena council currently employs 81 women engineers and 40 men engineers.
The job call stated that, if qualifications were at a similar level, then “a preferential title will be applied in favour of candidates belonging to the male gender”.