Derbyshire police defends how it pays female staff - despite having one of the biggest gender pay gaps of any force

Derbyshire Constabulary continues to have one of the largest pay gaps between men and women of all the police forces in England and Wales.

Wednesday, 3rd April 2019, 3:59 pm
Updated Wednesday, 3rd April 2019, 4:28 pm
Derbyshire constabulary's female employees earn on average 71p for every 1 that male colleagues earn
Derbyshire constabulary's female employees earn on average 71p for every 1 that male colleagues earn

Its gender pay gap, reported for the first time last year, remains the same – with female employees earning on average 71p for every £1 that male colleagues earn.

Last year Derbyshire police had the worst pay gap of all English and Welsh police forces. Several forces now trump Derbyshire police for that title – with the county moving to third-lowest.

Only police in Leicestershire (68p), Lancashire (69p) and Durham (69p) have larger gender pay gaps.

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A closer look at the latest statistics shows that even fewer of the highest paid employees at Derbyshire police are women.

Last year, 30.5 per cent of the highest-paid employees in the force were female – now that figure has dropped to 22.9 per cent.

Meanwhile, women continue to make up the lion’s share of the force’s lowest-paid – 69.8 per cent.

Last year the force stressed that more than two thirds of all of its police officers were men and more than two thirds of its police staff employees were women.

It said that this was vital to understanding the figures.

The force conceded that there was an “over-representation of men in higher ranking positions – together with more men having been employed for longer periods”.

Rachel Swann, deputy chief constable at Derbyshire Constabulary, said: “Derbyshire Constabulary is passionate about equality and is committed to being as representative as possible of the community we serve.

“I am confident that we provide equal pay for equal work and am determined that the force will never become complacent in that regard. That said we do have a gender pay gap caused largely by the over-representation of men in senior positions and in periods of longer service.

“We are already hosting a number of initiatives aimed at promoting gender equality, and will continue to design fairness into every recruitment and promotion process. We will also continue to be as flexible as possible, enabling a balance between work and family life.”

Deputy chief constable Swann is one of only two women in the force’s top team, alongside divisional commander for the north of the county, chief superintendent Rachel Osborne.

The leadership in charge of day-to-day policing in Derby is an all female trio: Inspector Jo Meakin oversees Derby East, inspector Becky Webster is in charge of Derby West and inspector Lauren Woods leads in Derby North.