BBC offers female staffer less pay than male colleagues

The BBC has been under investigation for historical pay inequalities, however, the high profile resignation of Karen Martin, who discovered she was offered £12,000 less than her male colleagues, proves the issue is as current as ever.

Eliza Archer
Eliza Archer NewsMavens, Europe
BBC offers female staffer less pay than male colleagues - NewsMavens
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Why this story matters:

Karen Martin was offered the position of deputy editor at the BBC radio newsroom, however, when she discovered her offered salary was £12,000 less than her male colleagues, she declined.

In an email sent to hundreds of BBC staff, Martin announced that "Despite being awarded the same job, on the same day, after the same board, during the same recruitment process, BBC News asked me to accept a considerably lower salary than my male counterpart. A lot less."

The email continued, "I’ve been assured our roles and responsibilities are the same. I’ve also been told my appointment was ‘very well deserved’. It’s just that I’m worth £12,000 less. Over the past four months I have asked BBC News to think again. And they’ve inched their offer up by addressing historical ‘under payments’. Now the gap is nearer to £7,000. But for me it has never been about the actual salary. It has been about equal pay."

Despite being discouraged from going public by BBC management who suggested her career would be damaged, Martin said the decision was made after a discussion with her daughters, aged 7 and 13. They expressed their desire to be paid the same as man when they grew up, finalizing her decision.

Details from the story:

  • Martin has since threatened legal action against the BBC.
  • This is in addition to current investigations by the Equality and Human Rights Commission into historical gender pay gap’s in the BBC.
  • The pay offered is estimated to be between 60,000 and 100,000 pounds. 

Project #Femfacts co-financed by European Commission Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology as part of the Pilot Project – Media Literacy For All

The information and views set out on this website are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official opinion of the European Union. Neither the European Union institutions and bodies nor any person acting on their behalf may be held responsible for the use which may be made of the information contained therein.

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