400 female ASDA employees are taking the supermarket giant to court this week, in a pay discrimination battle.
As reported by the Daily Record the hearing will address the Brierley v ASDA case of unfair pay of the female employees who were mainly shop floor workers for the supermarket chain in the Birmingham area. The women originally launched legal action in October 2014.
The women say they are entitled to the same pay as the male workers in ASDA’s distribution centres and warehouses, on the grounds that their jobs are of equal value. Warehouse workers are paid up to £4 per hour more.
The case hinges on determining whether the shopfloor jobs, which are held mostly by female employees, are equal value to the higher-paid jobs in the male-dominated distribution centres and warehouses.
It has been reported that ASDA claims to justify its pay differences on the basis that the warehouse employees work anti-social hours in uncomfortable conditions.
The supermarket giant employs an estimated 160,000 staff across the UK. Legal support for the claimants in this case is coming from Leigh Day, which claims to have reported an additional 19,000 enquiries from ASDA colleagues.
If the claimants are successful they could win up to six-years of back pay for the difference.
After the ASDA employees kicked off legal proceedings, four employees from Sainsbury’s also approached law firm Leigh Day in July 2015, which is now leading both cases.
The Sainbury’s employees are based in the Shrewsbury area and Fareham, Hampshire and also believe they are paid less than men to do equally valuable jobs at the supermarket chain. At that time it was said that a further 20,000 people contacted Leigh Day, after reading about the case.