The UK’s ‘Big Four’ supermarkets have been accused of paying male workers in distribution centres more than women in a lawsuit brought against them by law firm Leigh Day.
Leigh Day, which is representing female staff on allegations of unequal pay, lodged its first batch of claims against WM Morrison Supermarkets PLC (LON:MRW) in the Employment Tribunal today.
Morrisons faces a bill in excess of £1bn if the estimated 80,000 store staff join the case. So far about 1,000 enquiries have been made regarding the claim.
“We believe that Morrisons has made the same mistake as the other big supermarkets – Asda, Sainsbury’s and Tesco – by underpaying those working in the stores,” Leigh Day employment lawyer Emma Satyamurti said, according to City AM.
“These are huge companies with big profits and they have no excuse for not facing up to their legal obligations under Equal Pay legislation.”
Morrisons has been contacted for comment.
The case follows a similar lawsuit against Lloyds Banking Group PLC (LON:LLOY) over unequal pensions payments. Last month, a court ordered Lloyds to amend its pension schemes to make benefits equal for men and women after being accused of discrimination.
Judge Paul Morgan ruled that the bank’s pension trustee had a duty to change its schemes to equalise treatment after three female members complained that women’s pensions were rising at a slower rate than men on the same schemes.