Some of the BBC’s most prominent female journalists and TV presenters are banding together to demand that the broadcaster fix its wide gender pay gap immediately rather than in several years as management has proposed.
TV personalities including Clare Balding, Victoria Derbyshire and others wrote an open letter Sunday to the BBC’s top manager saying that plans to resolve the company’s gender pay gap by 2020 must be accelerated. They pointed out that the Equal Pay Act became the law in 1970.
BBC responded in a statement that it has made “significant changes” in recent years but needs to do more to close the pay gap.
Documents made public last week showed that male BBC TV and radio personalities make substantially more than their female counterparts. The salary disparity came to light after the publicly funded BBC was forced to publish the salary ranges of its best-paid actors and presenters.
The list showed that two-thirds of the highest earners were men, with the highest-paid woman earning less than a quarter of the highest-earning male star. Many BBC men were also found to be receiving far higher salaries than women in comparable jobs.
Balding, one of BBC’s most accomplished TV journalists, said in a pointed tweet that a 2020 target for equal pay isn’t good enough, since the Equal Pay Act was enacted in 1970 and the Equality Act was passed in 2010.
“We’re standing together to politely suggest they can do better,” she said.