…in brief

This week’s news in brief

Equal pay audit call

Trade union Amicus is calling on the Government to introduce compulsory
equal pay audits. The move comes after three-quarters of the 6,000 companies it
approached to complete a pay audit refused to do so, while 25 per cent failed
to respond. In all, only 50 firms agreed to carry out an audit.  www.aeeu.org.uk

Steel tariff jobs risk

The general secretary of Amicus, Sir Ken Jackson, claims more than 5,000
jobs could be lost in the UK because of the US tariffs on steel imports. He
said the US decision to load a 30 per cent tariff on imports could cost 18,000
steel jobs in the European Union and 5,000 in the UK. The union estimates that
the losses will occur as cheap steel imports flood into the EU.  www.aeeu.org.uk

Kitemark launched

Barbara Roche, Minister for Women, last week launched a gender equality
kitemark. The aim of the Castle Award, named after Barbara Castle who
introduced the Equal Pay Act in 1970, is to reward employers’ work in tackling
equal pay issues.  www.womenandequalityunit.gov.uk/castleawards

Renaming trend

Staff are being given fancy job titles instead of cash, research claims.
According to the survey of 1,700 workers by Reed.co.uk, companies are using
‘uptitling’ to motivate and retain staff when budgets are tight. Almost half of
those questioned thought a new job title would improve their job satisfaction.  www.reed.co.uk

Jobcentre strike fear

Up to 10,000 Jobcentre and benefit office staff will strike unless the
Government scraps plans to remove safety screens, the Public and Commercial
Service Union has warned. There are 225 new safety-screen free offices set to
open later this year, and 750 staff have already been on strike over the
removal of safety screens.  www.pcs.org.uk

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