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BBC resolved just one quarter of formal pay grievances in year since first list of top earners published, new figures reveal

The BBC has resolved just a quarter of pay grievances lodged in the past year since its list of top earners was first published, according to new figures.

The corporation was forced to publish the salaries of all its stars paid more than £150,000 from the licence fee for the first time in July 2017 following Government pressure.

The publication sparked a row over gender pay parity, as many of the BBC’s female stars could see for the first time whether they were paid equally to their male colleagues.

Former BBC China editor Carrie Gracie, who earned £135,000, has said she only discovered she was not on the same pay as other international editors when the list was published.

Gracie resigned from her role in January, accusing the BBC of a “secretive and illegal pay culture”, and last month she received an apology and backdated pay as the BBC accepted she should have been paid in line with North America editor Jon Sopel.

A BBC spokesperson previously told Press Gazette that around 230 individual pay claims had been raised between July and February this year, of which around half had been addressed by February.

A Freedom of Information request submitted by the Times has now revealed that of 29 formal pay grievances raised in the past year, just seven (24 per cent) have been “resolved” – which may still mean the complainant has yet to accept any recommended pay increase.

The Times reported that the BBC Women group accused the corporation of hiding the true number of grievances.

“There seems to be little consistency in the BBC’s methodology or in outcomes, whether through informal meetings or formal grievances,” the group said.

In response, a BBC spokesperson told Press Gazette: “We have been working hard to resolve any pay grievances as quickly as possible.

“However these grievances are often complex in nature, can relate to historical issues and may contain other queries in addition to pay. They often date back over a number of years and need to be properly assessed.

“We also believe it is fair to offer a right of appeal to the initial decision, and this can add additional time to the process.”

Picture: Reuters/Neil Hall 

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