BBC review finds ‘no gender bias in pay decisions’


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There is “no gender bias” regarding pay decisions at the BBC, according to a report into the corporation.

But the BBC’s approach to setting pay in general “has been far from perfect”, auditors PwC found.

BBC director general Tony Hall said: “Today’s report does not find evidence of gender bias in decision-making.

“But it shows it we have real and important issues to tackle… and I’m determined to get it right.”

‘Big, bold commitments’

The BBC said it would take five actions:

1. On air, there will be substantial pay cuts for some men, and pay rises for some men and women.

2. A new framework for determining the pay of people on air will be introduced, to match that already created for the rest of BBC staff.

3. Everyone will be able to see the pay range for virtually every job in the BBC. Where there are more than 20 people in a job, staff will also be able to see where everyone else is positioned.

4. The BBC will review the progression of women in the corporation, looking at working practices and support for women returning to work.

5. We will accelerate progress towards equal representation of men and women at all levels on air, and also towards closing the gender pay gap by 2020.

Lord Hall added: “The plans we’re setting out today go further and are more important steps in modernising the BBC and making it fairer.

“We’ve already made an important start. We’re addressing unfairness in individuals’ pay and want to close the gender pay gap and have women in half of our on-air roles by 2020. Those are big, bold commitments I’m really serious about.”

Tuesday’s announcement about on-air pay takes place against the backdrop of a long-running debate about gender pay at the BBC, which began last summer after the corporation published its salaries for on-air staff earning more than £150,000.

Last week, six of the BBC’s leading male presenters agreed to take pay cuts.

A report published in October found men working for the BBC earn an average of 9.3% more than women.

The figure covered all staff, on and off air, and was put down to the fact there are more men in senior jobs.

It compares with a UK average of 18%, and Lord Hall said it showed the BBC was “in a better place than many organisations”. The BBC announced several reviews into the issue of pay.

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Source: BBC News