Extension of Equal Pay provisions

The Labour Government are planning to introduce new statutory changes in relation to Equal Pay provisions, extending the provision to include BAME and disabled workers.

Under current legislation, claims can only be brought in relation to equal pay where the Claimant alleges that the reason for a difference in pay was on the grounds of sex.

However, according to a Guardian Article dated 4th February 2024, a new Race Equality Bill has been drafted by the Labour party to extend equal pay rights to BAME and disabled workers.

Proposals state that if a BAME employee is paid less than a white employee on the grounds of their race, they can recover the difference as an ordinary race discrimination claim. Other proposed changes worth noting include the introduction of a new ethnicity pay gap reporting system, new requirements for police officers/staff to complete anti-racism training and an overhaul of the school’s curriculum to ensure diversity.

This change would mean that equal pay claims on the basis of ethnicity and disability will be treated the same as those made under the grounds of sex under the existing Equal Pay law.

If Labour are successful in the upcoming election and the bill gets approval, employers will need to ensure that they remain compliant to these new statutory changes.

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