Mark Whitehead 31 May 2017

Glasgow CC faces accusations of discrimination in equal pay case

Glasgow CC faces accusations of discrimination in equal pay case  image

Thousands of low paid women are set to make equal pay claims against Glasgow City Council after winning a court victory.

The GMB union says the council continued to discriminate against women despite the introduction of payment protection.

It says an attempt to avoid pay-outs was kicked out by the Court of Session and is now calling on the council’s new SNP administration to quickly resolve all outstanding equal pay claims.

Women working in the public sector have, historically, been paid less than their male counterparts for doing comparable jobs, so equal pay claims have been introduced to make up for this.

In recent years, a number of councils, such as Fife, Birmingham and North Lanarkshire, have faced historic equal pay claims.

GMB Scotland secretary Gary Smith said: ‘The new council leadership has been elected on a manifesto promise to resolve all outstanding equal pay claims and it goes without saying that GMB Scotland fully expects this to be honoured as swiftly as possible.’

‘The council implemented a new pay and benefits structure, designed to ensure equal pay more than ten years ago,’ a Glasgow CC spokesperson said.

‘The matter before the court on this occasion related to the initial implementation of that scheme – and, more specifically, the decision to offer a three year period of payment protection as a ‘soft landing’ for members of the workforce facing a drop in earnings.’

Cllr Susan Aitken, council leader, said: ‘This is a complex legal ruling. However, it is now clear that the award of pay protection was done in a way which discriminated against some of our female workers at that time.

‘The right thing to do now is for the council to have open discussions with those workers and their representatives about how we give effect to this ruling. I hope there will be goodwill on both sides during those discussions.’

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