Advertising agency Mr President and creative network SheSays have made replica pound coins with the value of 82p as part of an Equal Pay Day Campaign. The convincing fakes, called The Pay Gap Pound, have been minted to remind people that on average women earn just 82p for every pound earned by men. Equal Pay Day, which is today (14 November), is the day from which women effectively work for free until the end of the year because of the average disparity in earnings.
Mr President minted a run of 100 coins, as well as launching an online campaign that allows women to create a virtual Pay Gap Pound with a value corresponding to their own industry. According to stats found in the Office of National Statistics’ Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings 2018 report, female graphic designers on average earn 95p to the £1, while those in advertising earn just 79p.
Mr President chief creative officer Laura Jordan Bambach, says: “By allowing women to generate the Pay Gap Pound for their industry we are making it personal. Because there is nothing more personal than the cash in your pocket. At the current rate it will take 60 years to close the pay gap. With so many cases of pay inequality in the courts right now, and movements like #MeTooPay capturing public attention, there’s never been a better time to shout about the issue and demand change.”
When It’s Nice That quizzed Mr President about the production process behind the replicas, the agency mischievously answered, “No comment”. “When you are forging legal tender you have to go off the grid,” say creatives Elliott Tiney and Anders Wendel, who came up with the idea for the campaign. “We wanted to make the coins as realistic as possible, even if that meant we might be accused of forgery. If we are then even better. That could draw more attention to our campaign.”
The coins have been given to influential figures to raise awareness of Equal Pay Day and to encourage both women and men to fight the numerous factors that underpin the gender pay gap. They will not, of course, enter into circulation because that would be illegal.