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Birmingham City Council could appeal equal pay ruling

Birmingham City Council is today reviewing a ruling from an employment tribunal which could lead to a £30 million payout to 5,000 female staff who won a case for equal pay. It is believed that differences in the working contracts of men and women working for the Council could see pay and bonuses back dated after they were initially only paid to selected male workers.

While a potential £30 million payout would be difficult for the council to fund, lawyers believe the overall cost could be as high as £600 million following the employment tribunal ruling. Much of the anger and resentment leading to today's tribunal ruling is a result of a change in pay structures in 2007 with unions claiming that some people were up to £18,000 worse off.

This is not the first time that local councils have been on the wrong end of employment tribunal rulings regarding equal pay. However, a potential £600 million payout has certainly seen many equal employment and human rights lawyers sit up and take notice in the UK. If any appeal is unsuccessful this could be the first of a number of similar cases to go before UK employment tribunals up and down the country.

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