BBC loses equal pay case against Samira Ahmed

10 January 2020

Samira Ahmed has won her sex discrimination case against the BBC, in which she argued that her pay for presenting Newswatch should have matched that of Jeremy Vine for his work on Points of View.

Ms. Ahmed was paid £465 per episode she presented whereas Mr. Vine commanded £3,000 an episode.

A panel of three judges found that both programmes lasted for a duration of 15 minutes and were presented in magazine format. The only real difference was that Newswatch only allowed viewers to discuss the news as opposed to general programming, which was deemed as being a minor difference, which “had no impact on the work that the two presenters did, or the skills and experience required to present the programmes.”

The panel disregarded the BBC’s argument that there was additional pressure placed on Mr Vine because he was presenting a show which had previously been fronted by well-known figures such as Terry Wogan.

The CIPP reported on the case back in October 2019 and wanted to provide an update confirming the verdict.

Providing a statement last year, Ms. Ahmed commented:

“I love my job on Newswatch despite it being difficult and challenging.

 On the back of my BBC ID card are written the BBC values which include ‘we respect each other and celebrate our diversity’ and ‘we take pride in delivering quality and value for money’.

 I just ask why the BBC thinks I am worth only one-sixth of the value of the work of a man for doing a very similar job.”

 Following her victory, she said:

No woman wants to have to take action against their own employer. I’m now looking forward to continuing to do my job, to report on stories and not being one.’’


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