BBC News’ Gender Discrimination Headache

This week, British Broadcasting Corporation (“BBC”) released its annual report. While releasing an annual report is nothing out of the ordinary, the contents of the report, specifically the salaries top BBC personalities, are raising eyebrows around the world and calling into question BBC’s pay practices and whether BBC was actively discriminating against women with regards to pay.

One of the most stunning findings in the report is that the highest paid male personality, Chris Evans, makes approximately $2 million more than Claudia Winkleman, the highest paid female personality. Pay gap disparities exist throughout the report, and BBC virtually admitted to discriminating against women when it committed to fixing the pay gap by 2020. Most of the top female earners have subsequently authored a letter demanding that the pay gap is fixed immediately.

In the United Kingdom, many of the laws prohibiting discrimination of any kind, including gender discrimination, are found in the Equality Act of 2010. Not surprisingly, the Equality Act of 2010 and anti-discrimination laws in the United States are similar to each other, even down to the factors used to determine if discrimination occurred. Those factors center around the following questions:

  • Does the employee perform similar work as his/her non-discriminated co-worker?
  • Does the employee perform work of equal value compared to his/her non-discriminated co-worker?
  • Does the employee’s work match the quality of the non-discriminated co-worker?

After a court completes this analysis, there is a better understanding of whether or not discrimination occurred. Some questions that remain to be answered include: How long has the gender pay gap been persisting? and Were minorities also affected by and discriminated against with regards to their pay? Based on the revelations from the corporation’s report, and the collective response from the affected female workers, there is a chance that a court will be performing this analysis soon.

Although this is happening overseas, gender discrimination and gender pay gaps exist in the United States. If you are in a situation where you are being paid less than someone, or you complained about someone being paid more than you, and you believe the reason for that disparity is gender, contact me as soon as possible and schedule a free initial consultation where we can determine your best course of action.

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James J. Hux is the Owner and Sole Attorney at Hux Law Firm, LLC. His practice areas include employment discrimination, personal injury, and general civil litigation throughout the State of Ohio.