Glasgow City Council faces enormous payout to settle equal pay claims
Glasgow City Council faces a payout of hundreds of millions of pounds to settle equal pay claims with female staff who are demanding pensions are factored into any settlement.
There are 11,500 current and former employees with claims against the council following a ruling last year from the Court of Session that a pay deal struck in 2007 discriminated against female workers.
The council could be made to pay £500 million to compensate employees for being paid less than men carrying out the same jobs in the intervening years.
But the lawyer representing the majority of the women said pensions must be included.
Stefan Cross QC of Action 4 Equality Scotland, which is which is representing 7,500 women, told The Herald: “At the moment we are only discussing process with Glasgow City Council and not the details at all, but pensions would be a red line for us. If they don’t agree to it being pensionable then we won’t have an agreement.
“People don’t realise that because men are getting more pay they are getting more pension. This discrimination is baked in for a lifetime.”
The total bill could increase to £1 billion if settlements are made pensionable.
Unison regional manager Peter Hunter said: “Our core argument is that the women should be getting this money now but that they should have been getting it 10 years ago.
“If they got it as payment then it would have been pensionable and in the negotiations we will be insisting that the claimants get information about their rights to get it treated as pensionable pay.”
A spokesman for the council said: “At this early stage, nobody involved knows what any negotiated settlement will look like, these are all matters that will be up for proper discussion over this year.”