Are politicians worth their salaries? Lawmakers top list of professionals that Russians say get paid too much in new poll

While nobody would say it’s an easy job, politicians’ pay is a controversial topic across the world. Russia, it appears, is no different, with nearly four out of five people surveyed for a new poll saying they get too much cash.

The study, published by the Paris-based market research firm Ipsos on Monday, found that 79 percent of Russians named politicians as those whose salaries are higher than necessary. Bankers also failed to escape the public’s anger, with 61 percent saying they take home more than they deserve.

While both sets of professionals were common answers as part of the worldwide survey, which asked 20,520 adults across 28 different countries what they thought, Russians were more skeptical of perceived high pay. An average of 74 percent of respondents across the globe named politicians, while only 41 percent named bankers.

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However, in good news for politicians in Moscow, Russians had a better view of gender balance among parliamentarians and lawmakers than many other nations. 70 percent of Russians said the sector was dominated mainly by men, fewer than those from countries like Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan and South Korea. The most skeptical of their salaries were those living in Argentina, with 91 percent saying their paychecks should be cut.

According to those living in the country, social workers such as those assisting the elderly and disabled earn too little. Some 71 percent said they should get a pay rise. A total of 70 percent also said nurses deserved a pay rise, while 69 percent also mentioned childcare workers and nannies.

However, Russians were the least likely of any nationality to say that the gender pay gap was a pressing concern in the survey, launched on International Women’s Day. Only around one in four women and just 16 percent of men said reducing pay differences should be a top priority at present.

Earlier this year, a study by the Rabota.ru jobs site found that, on average, Russians would ideally like to take home 158,000 rubles a month ($2,138) to be comfortable. Those in Moscow, however, say they need more, with 175,000 rubles ($2,368) seen as an adequate sum.

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