Morrisons faced with £1bn equal pay claims

Morrisons is the latest supermarket chain to be faced with Equal Pay claims. which could by as costly as £1bn.

Law firm Leigh Day is seeking compensation for women in stores who believe they are paid less than men in the distribution centres for equal work.

The firm has lodged claims with the conciliation service ACAS while awaiting a response from Morrisons CEO David Potts, who they have written to on behalf of the first group of clients requesting Pay and Gender information for workers.

Leigh Day have also asked Morrisons to confirm if they have carried out an equal pay audit. As Morrisons has around 80,000 store staff eligible to claim, the final bill for back pay could be in excess of £1bn.

This move against the Bradford-headquartered supermarket chain means that Leigh Day is now bringing Equal Pay claims against all of the ‘big four’ supermarkets. The law firm is already taking legal action on behalf of 30,000 staff working in Asda, Sainsbury’s and Tesco stores.

Emma Satyamurti, partner in law firm Leigh Day’s employment team, said: “We believe that Morrisons, as with the other major supermarkets, has underpaid those working in its stores for a number of years.  The big four supermarkets in the UK make vast amounts each year in profits – it is time that they faced up to their legal obligations under Equal Pay legislation.

“Our clients believe that those working on the shop floor should be paid the same as those in the distribution centres, and a failure to commit to this is not only unfair but unlawful.

“This legal action is being taken forward to ensure that the work done in stores and distribution centres is recognised as being of equal value; not the same work, but work of equal value and that those working on the shop floor should be paid the same as their colleagues in distribution.”

Morrisons have been approached for a comment.