Gender Pay: BBC Told to Pay Female Presenter Same as Famous Male Presenter

Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images
Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images

An employment tribunal has sided with BBC presenter Samira Ahmed after she argued she should be paid the same as fellow presenter Jeremy Vine.

Ahmed argued that she had been underpaid for her role on the Newswatch programme relative to Vine’s role on Points of View, and that she should be handed roughly £700,000 in back pay.

While judges on the tribunal have not said whether she must receive this money, they have dismissed the BBC’s claims that Ahmed and Vine had “very different roles” and that “her work on Newswatch was like Jeremy Vine’s work on Points of View under section 65(1) of the Equality Act 2010”.

The publicly-funded broadcaster has been ordered to change Ahmed’s contract “so as not to be less favourable than the terms relating to pay in Jeremy Vine’s contracts”.

Ahmed thanked “everyone — all the men and women who’ve supported me and the issue of equal pay.”

“I’m now looking forward to continuing to do my job, to report on stories and not being one,” she added, having also said that “No woman wants to have to take action against their own employer” and “I love working for the BBC.”

The BBC has responded weakly to the ruling, stating: “Samira Ahmed is an excellent journalist and presenter and we regret that this case ever had to go to tribunal” and “We want to work together with Samira to move on in a positive way.”

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