Women claiming equal pay no longer need to name male colleague doing same job for more money


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As many as 7,000 women will be able to pursue claims for equal pay following a Court of Appeal ruling yesterday.

In the cases of Hurst vs Suffolk Mental Health Trust and Arnold and Others vs Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council, female healthcare assistants, clerical and secretarial staff, carers, care assistants and cleaners claimed a women should not have to name a specific male employee as a comparator when filing an equal pay grievance. The court ruled in their favour.

Bronwyn McKenna, director of organising and membership at Unison, said: "I am very pleased common sense has prevailed in this case. These employers were simply trying to deliver a knockout blow to the women's genuine equal pay claims by concocting this get-out clause.

"It would seem glaringly obvious to all that it would be nearly impossible for women just starting their battle for equal pay to name their male comparator. This is particularly true given that all the information is held, and often closely guarded, by the employers themselves."

Unison reports it has 45,000 equal pay claims outstanding but yesterday's decision includes 5,000 NHS employees and 2,000 local government staff.

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