The Coffee Shop EVERY Woman’s Been Waiting For…
Coffee; saviour of the mid-morning slump; defender of the face-to-face conversation; beating lifeline of the millennial generation. Is there anything that sweet, smooth, caramel-coloured cup of Joe can’t do? Battle the age-defining social issue of the gender paygap, you say? Well, we’re glad you brought that up…
A cafe in Melbourne, Australia – suitable named the Handsome Her – has placed a levy (or IOW, a tax) on all orders placed by male customers. 18% to be exact, which means the Daves of down-under are paying approximately a fifth more for their extra-hot, double-shot, wet, tall, no-foam, non-fat macchiatos, than the Sheilas. Sounds like a lot, right? It sounds like a whole lot more when you suddenly realise this figure represents the Australian gender paygap.
House rules at Handsome Her
To translate that percentage into cold hard cash, women in Australia earn approximately 82p for every pound a man earns, while here in merry ol’ blighty, it’s closer to 80p, which is why cafe owner, Alex O’Brien, has decided to take things into her own java-scented hands. Of course, men aren’t exactly forced into paying the additional charge (though we’d hate to imagine the icy death-stares they’ll receive if they don’t!), but assuming they do play along, then their premium will be donated to a number of women-based charities.
The cafe’s iconic ‘Wall of Dames’
While the scheme’s received plenty of praise, it’s also received (surprise, surprise) a backlash of negativity on Twitter, too. Male tweeters? How did you guess. Their general consensus? That a cafe would never get away with charging more to female customers. And they’re absolutely right, of course, but that’s because the 18% man-tax purely reflects the fact that men already receive a substantially heftier pay packet. Either way, it’s highlighted the issue in a completely original way (a little like when you use apples to teach kids how to add!), and in that sense, can only be another step towards smashing that goddam glass ceiling once and for all!
What do you make of the Handsome Her cafe and it’s male-only tax on caffeinated beverages – is it an unnecessary scheme which will only antagonise the issue, or is it a poignant social comment on gender quality? As far as we’re concerned, it’s high time the world woke up and, ahem… smelled the coffee. #SorryNotSorry