A female manager at one of the World’s largest media house, BBC turned down a job promotion after finding out that there was a gender pay gap.
The BBC manager Karen Martin who was to be hired as one of the two deputy editors for the BBC radio newsroom told colleagues she turned down a promotion after finding out she would be paid £12,000 less than a man in the same role.
She said colleague Roger Sawyer would be earning more than her. The BBC stood by its offers and said several factors, including working experience, had to be considered, BBC reported.
In her email to colleagues, Martin wrote: “Despite being awarded the same job, on the same day, after the same board, during the same recruitment process, BBC News asked me to accept a considerably lower salary than my male counterpart.
“I’ve been assured our roles and responsibilities are the same. I’ve also been told my appointment was ‘very well deserved’. It’s just that I’m worth £12,000 less.”
She added, after requesting the BBC to reconsider its offer, a new salary was offered on the grounds of historical underpayments, bringing the gap closer to £7,000. But, she said, the issue for her had “never been about the actual salary… but about equal pay”.
In response, the BBC’s head of news output Gavin Allen told staff: “We took into account the fact that Roger has worked at or above this level for several years, whereas Karen was offered this role as a promotion, with a significant pay increase.
“We think most people would understand that these factors would result in some difference between their individual pay.”
The issue of equal pay at the BBC was brought into the public domain in 2017, the first year the corporation was forced by MPs to disclose how much it paid to its top talent.
The publication of salaries eventually led to the resignation of Carrie Gracie as China editor, who was being paid less than North America editor Jon Sopel. The BBC apologised and said it “has now put this right” by giving Gracie back pay.
Early this year it was reported that American media mogul Oprah Winfrey opened up about her experience with unequal pay. She revealed that higher-ups at a Baltimore news organization where she worked rejected her request to be paid the same amount as her male counterpart because she did not have kids or a mortgage.