Equal pay ruling boost for women health workers

Public
sector union Unison has won a historic equal pay ruling which affects hundreds
of women working at Carlisle Hospitals NHS Trust.

A
group of women – including nurses, catering assistants, clerical officers,
sewing machine assistants, porters and telephonists – compared their wages to a
group of craftsmen, joiners, building labourers, wall washers, works officers,
craftsman supervisors and maintenance assistants.

A
panel of independent experts appointed by the Newcastle employment tribunal,
ruled that the women were entitled to equal pay.

Unison
national secretary Karen Jennings said: "This confirms that there has been
historic discrimination against women workers in the health service.

"A
panel of independent experts have confirmed our view that these women workers
have been discriminated for years. We have always argued that they have been
underpaid and unfairly paid compared to men and the independent experts agree.

"We
suspect that further reports on other groups of workers will support our claims
in the same way."

By Quentin Reade

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