GMB Union’s Battle for Asda Workers’ Equal Pay Returns

Union calls on supermarket giant to ‘stop chasing lost cause’ and pay up following trio of defeats over historic pay injustices.

GMB, the union for Asda workers, will be bringing more than 17,000 members claims back to court in the latest stage of the battle to win equal pay.

The hearings will take place between 13 and 24 May and between 3 and 7 June at the Crown Court in Manchester.

The 17,000 claims have been brought by the GMB trade union, represented by law firm Leigh Day.

Asda lost the first stage of the case at Employment Tribunal in October 2016 and appealed.

In August 2017 the Employment Appeal Tribunal thew out their appeal, ruling all ten grounds unsuccessful.

Asda then appealed this ruling to the Court of Appeal – and lost – in January 2019.

Asda have requested to further appeal the judgment in the Supreme Court, permission for that appeal is yet to be decided.

The Employment Tribunal will next week hear evidence regarding whether the roles of the shop workers in store and workers in the distribution centres are of equal value.

Asda workers will argue that the work carried out in stores, which is predominantly carried out by women, is of equal value to that carried out in Asda’s distribution centres which is predominantly carried out by men and will argue that as both groups of workers are preforming work of equal value Asda should pay them the same rate of pay.

Susan Harris, GMB Legal Director said: “While Asda waste money on lawyers’ bills chasing a lost cause, losing appeal after appeal, tens of thousands of women workers remain out of pocket.

“It’s about time for this highly profitable supermarket giant to stop blocking the legal claims of our women members, accept the ruling of the courts and get its shop in order.

“Instead of seeking to impose a wildly unpopular so-called ‘flexible’ contract on the very same workforce, Asda should be addressing a historic pay injustice which has seen women workers losing out for years.”

(Source: GMB)

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