Through Equal Pay Now, we are launching a legal claim to challenge the unjust treatment of supermarket store workers, who do long hours and arduous work, yet are paid less than their colleagues working in warehouses and distribution centres.
Traditionally store work has been done by women, and warehouse work by men. A historic gender pay gap and an incorrect assumption that jobs in warehouses are more demanding has resulted in unequal wages. It is blatantly unfair. Thanks to the Equality Act, it is also unlawful.
Where two jobs in the same company are different but of equal value, the Act states that employees must be paid the same (unless the employer can justify not doing so). Clearly, this isn’t happening in supermarkets. This is leaving plenty of female store workers, and an increasing number of men who have joined them on the shop floor over the years, seriously out of pocket. Putting this right is long overdue, and that is exactly what we intend to do.
Equal Pay Now and supermarket workers
We believe that supermarket store workers are being treated unfairly by their employers. That is why we are taking our claim to an employment tribunal on a ‘no win-no fee’ basis.
We are confident that we can prove that the work done by employees in supermarket stores is equal to the work carried out in warehouses and distribution centres.
Victory in court would mean two things for those who join our claim: improved wages and a chance to claim up to six years of back pay.
Our legal case will be led by the claim of female store workers. If successful, our male members will be able to ‘piggyback’ this action and enjoy the same improved wages and opportunity to reclaim lost earnings.
Join the claim
All supermarket store workers who are paid by the hour can join Equal Pay Now. It doesn’t matter how long you have had your job for or what gender you are. If you have recently left employment at a supermarket, you may also be able to join the claim.
The fact that Leigh Day are working on a ‘no win-no fee’ basis means our members only pay legal fees if we win, with the amount payable made clear before the claim proceeds (For more on costs and fees, go here).
If the court rules in our favour, it is likely that all supermarket store workers will have their pay increased, but only those who signed up to our claim will be eligible for compensation.
If you are worried that by joining the claim you might lose your job as a result, please don’t be. When a worker makes a claim for equal pay, it is unlawful for their employer to discipline, sack or discriminate against them in any way as a result.
Find out how to join our movement for fair treatment here.