MP backs women over equal pay

A COUNTY MP has raised the issue of equal pay for female workers following a landmark court ruling.

In the wake of the Supreme Court extending the time they have to bring compensation claims from six months to six years, Guy Opperman called for a parliamentary debate during a House of Commons session.

He has previously given his backing to women staff members at Northumberland County Council who took on the authority after it was revealed they were paid less than their male counterparts.

The judges from the highest court of appeal in England gave a ruling on the case of former Birmingham City Council workers that will have implications on local authorities across the country.

Speaking in Parliament, the MP for Hexham asked Leader of the House Andrew Lansley: “May we have a debate on equal pay for women?

“That request arises first out of the landmark decision on the issue by the Supreme Court, but also because county councils up and down the country are facing a problem caused by a failure to pay the women they have employed over the years.

“In Northumberland, for example, hundreds of my constituents face a five-year delay to be paid.”

Mr Lansley said that the Government very much supports equal pay.

A county council spokeswoman said: “The council and trade unions have agreed a way forward in settling outstanding equal pay claims.

“A number of offers have been made and the council expects to make more offers in the future.”