Lloyds Trade Union (LTU)

Lloyds Trade Union (LTU)

November 25, 2013 12:43 ET

Lloyds Banking Group Loses Equal Pay Claims

LTU, the independent trade union representing 40,000 Lloyds Banking Group staff, has won a landmark equal pay test case against Lloyds Banking Group. Some 7,000 members of staff could now make claims and that could cost the Bank millions in compensation payments.

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwired - Nov. 25, 2013) - The case followed the merger of Lloyds TSB and HBoS and the Bank's requirement that all staff sign the new contracts of employment in order to secure future pay rises. Some 7,000 staff refused to sign the new contracts of employment because they were concerned about a number of danger clauses, the main one being around working hours, and the Bank withheld annual pay increases in 2010 and then gave the non-signers only half the salary increases they were entitled to in 2011. Clear statistical evidence shows that the requirement to sign the new contracts had a marked adverse impact on women, particularly those working part-time.

The Statistics

The statistical evidence against the Bank was overwhelming and damning.

38% of women were non-signers compared to 22% of men; the proportion of women who didn't sign the contracts was 78%, which was higher than the proportion of women in the workforce as a whole at 63%; 55% of those that didn't sign were part time employees compared to 20% of full-time staff who didn't sign.

In commenting on the Bank's justification for withholding pay increases to the non-signers, the Employment Judge says:

"The Bank did not grant annual pay increases to staff that refused to sign the harmonised terms and conditions. The Bank contended that a carrot was offered to signers. We consider that is at odds with the reality of the situation. The pay increases in question were normal annual pay rises. Signers were not being given some thing that they would not normally get. Non-signers were not receiving normal pay increases because they had refused to sign the harmonised terms. We can recognise a stick when we see one."

Union Comments

Commenting on the judgement, Mark Brown, General Secretary of LTU, has said:

"Even as they implemented their threat not to grant pay rises to non-signers the Bank's HR Leadership Team knew full well that it would have a disproportionate effect on women.

And despite knowing the impact of its policy on relatively low paid women, the Bank did nothing and carried on hoping that its discriminatory actions wouldn't be challenged. Well they were challenged and the Bank has lost.

We estimate that the Bank will have spent £millions of taxpayers' money defending the indefensible and that is a point we will be making in a letter to MPs next week. The CEO was happy to settle the PPI case for customers, at a cost of £8bn. He should now do the right thing and settle this case, which he inherited from Eric Daniels and the old GEC, for the 7,000 staff involved."

About LTU

LTU- with 40,000 members - is the largest independent trade union representing staff in the Lloyds Banking Group. Within the merged Bank, Accord would be the second largest union with over 26,000 staff and Unite the third, representing only approximately 6,000 staff across the Group.

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