Women's earning power decimated by having kids

HAVING children has a devastating impact on women&rsquo;s earning power, a new report has revealed.<br /><br />The report, compiled by women&rsquo;s rights campaign group the Fawcett Society and entitled &ldquo;Not Having It All&rdquo;, said that childless women working full time earned on average 9 per cent less than men, but that the gender pay gap rose to 21.6 per cent for full-time working mothers with two children.<br /><br />It also highlighted the problem of discrimination during pregnancy, saying there has been a marked increase in the numbers of women seeking help on the matter during the downturn.<br /><br />Dr Katherine Rake, director of the Fawcett Society, said: &ldquo;The choice of whether and when to return to employment is of course a very personal one. However, it is critical that those mothers who choose or need to be in paid work should be able to do so without suffering a pay penalty.&rdquo;