June 17, 2024

Presenter Samira Ahmed wins her equal pay claim

Samira currently receives £465 per episode while Jeremy is paid £3000 for his. “On the back of my BBC ID card are written the BBC values which include ‘we respect each other and celebrate our diversity’ and ‘we take pride in delivering quality and value for money’, she revealed in a statement last year.

“I just ask why the BBC thinks I am worth only one-sixth of the value of the work of a man for doing a very similar job. ”

Samira Ahmed has won an equal pay claim against the BBC. The Newswatch presenter argued that she should be paid the same salary as Points of View’s Jeremy Vine, and the failure to do so was a result of sex discrimination.

Despite BBC’s claim that Samira and Jeremy were not doing similar work, a judge at the London Central Employment Tribunal has ruled that the network had “failed to rebut the presumption of sex discrimination that arose when she proved that her work was like his work”.

Speaking after the ruling , Ahmed said: “No woman wants to have to take action against their own employer,” adding “I’m now looking forward to continuing to do my job, to report on stories and not being one. ”

BBC Radio 4 presenter Jane Garvey took to Twitter to celebrate the news. “Just brilliant @SamiraAhmedUK – it took real courage and she has it. #equalpay,” she wrote.
This marks another resounding win for women in broadcasting after decades of unequal pay. In 2018, news broadcasters and former China editor was awarded significant pay back and a public apology from the BBC after it was revealed she was paying being paid less than half of her male colleagues. That same year, Holly Willoughby was granted a £200,000 pay rise in order to match her co-star Phillip Schofield’s salary.

A BBC Spokesperson said: “Samira Ahmed is an excellent journalist and presenter and we regret that this case ever had to go to Tribunal. We’re committed to equality and equal pay. Where we’ve found equal pay cases in the past we’ve put them right. However, for us, this case was never about one person, but the way different types of programmes across the media industry attract different levels of pay.

“We have always believed that the pay of Samira and Jeremy Vine was not determined by their gender. Presenters – female as well as male – had always been paid more on Points of View than Newswatch.

“We’re sorry the Tribunal didn’t think the BBC provided enough evidence about specific decisions – we weren’t able to call people who made decisions as far back as 2008 and have long since left the BBC.

“In the past our pay framework was not transparent and fair enough, and we have made significant changes to address that; we’re glad this satisfied the Tribunal that there was sufficient evidence to explain her pay now.

“We’ll need to consider this judgment carefully. We know Tribunals are never a pleasant experience for anyone involved. We want to work together with Samira to move on in a positive way. ”

While there is still a long road ahead regarding equal pay, we salute Samira for leading the fight.

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