Gender Pay Gap Action Plan

The College has created a new Gender Pay Gap Action Plan to help tackle the significant inequalities that still exist within mental health services.  

An  independent review recently highlighted that the gender pay gap between men and women in medicine is highest for hospital doctors – with female doctors earning 18.9% less an hour when adjusted for contracted hours.

Our Women and Mental Health Special Interest Group have come up with a list of 10 actions aimed at reducing this gap (see below). We're asking all mental health service providers in the UK to take up these recommendations to ensure there is equality of opportunity for women psychiatrists at all levels.

We've already taken action to reduce our own Gender Pay Gap to 2.85%, down from 17% in 2019. We have worked hard to create a values-based and fair workplace but we know that we can always do more to support our staff. We will always strive to make more progress in this area.

Our 10 recommendations

# Action

All Trusts and Boards should adopt an open and transparent approach regarding pay. This should include:

  • Mandatory Gender Pay Gap reporting and publishing of a Gender Pay Gap action plan
  • Transparent reporting of local Clinical Impact Awards and staff awarded extra PAs.
Open and regular benchmarking of consultant job plans to ensure equitable job plans and equitable distribution of additional PAs.

Review of the current local Clinical Impact Awards process to consider options, including splitting awards for all eligible consultants.

If an application-based system, Trusts and Boards to encourage their female staff to put themselves forward and commit to positive actions in the scoring process to actively increase equity. 

3 When recruiting to senior and leadership roles, it is not enough to state ‘we welcome applications from women’. There must be a commitment to positive actions in the recruitment process to actively ensure diversity at a senior level. 
4 All staff should be offered the opportunity to apply for flexible working arrangements and supported where possible and practical.

Trusts and Boards should be proactive in advising and promoting best practice in policies relating to women in their workforces. In particular:

  • Maternity policy – considering leave entitlement and pay, and risk assessment to consider increased flexibility in maternity/return to work particularly with regards to out-of-hours work.
  • Menopause policy
  • Flexible working policy
6 All Trusts and Boards to consider the needs of employees who are parents or carers, for example support and compensation with child-care or on-site childcare in their offer.
7 All senior staff to receive EDI training that should include a gender focus. Training should also include mandatory training on undertaking Equality Impact Assessments (EQIA)
8 All changes to leadership structures should undergo a full EQIA with action plan and transparent review process. 
9 Review of LTFT training for psychiatrists to address pay and career disadvantages facing those that take these routes to CCT in particular to consider competency-based training framework rather than time-based. 
10 All Trusts and Boards should have a clear, meaningful and robust sexual harassment and sexual harm policy for staff (separate to bullying and harassment policy) that recognises the additional challenges faced by women in the workplace and results in women feeling safer and supported in the workplace.