Excluded from pay rise due to being on secondment
in Employment, jobseeking & training
9 replies 502 views
Looking for some advice... I've been with my employer for many years and started as a production worker on the shop floor. Last year I took a secondment to cover maternity in the office. When I started, my pay was not increased to the level of the person I replaced. There wasn't much difference anyway as the role is very underpaid compared to the same role anywhere else. But last month the production workers were given a significant increase to their shift allowance but having checked my pay, I was not included in it.
I've already asked why I did not get it and the response has been - "due to your secondment and working office hours, you are not in receipt of this increase". Anyone know enough about employment law and secondments able to point out if this is fair/legal?
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This sort of thing boils my pee because you're either office or production and if you've forfeited toe office salary difference then you should imo get the perks of your old pay.
But that's the ideal world answer not the legal answer what terms did you agree?
Legal? Almost certainly.
Unless there was any contractual entitlement to a pay rise, or some specific agreement when you took this "secondment", then the short answer is no right to a pay rise unless your rate of pay falls below the national minimum wage. It is entirely a matter for negotiation between you and the employer.
There is certainly no right to be paid the same as the person you replaced.
Equally there is no requirement for all the production workers to be given the same increase (or indeed any increase at all). The only exception would be if the reason for treating some differently amounted to unlawful discrimination (e.g race, gender etc etc). It is also unlawful to treat a part time worker less favourably that a full time person simply because they are part time.
"No, no, no Mr Employer, I implore you check section 3 subection 2 clause 5 of the Employment Rights Act, which states very plainly that you MUST give me an increase in this situation." - "I've just checked it and you're right! I'm so sorry, please, take this money and my public apology".
Employers are free to give whatever increases they see fit, as long as it isn't due to a protected characteristic (which it isn't in your case).
However, I would say it sounds like they are completely taking the mick out of you. If the role is 'very unpaid compared to the same role anywhere else', I'd say you are in a strong position - as it would cost them financially to replace you (both for the increased salary to attract candidates, and the time to train a new recruit).
Depends if you are confident enough to push for a pay review.
When I covered a colleague's maternity leave some years ago (before I retired), I was paid exactly the same amount as the person I was covering for, and it was higher than my own pay grade. When she returned to work, I went back to my own job (which had been covered by a temporary worker) and my pay went down accordingly. That seemed fair enough to me and I signed a temporary contract for that secondment.
Now the production workers where you work have been given a rise and you haven't. Your employer is not acting legally at all.
Your employer is discriminating unfairly against you, contrary to the Equality Act of 2010 and the Equality and Human Rights Commission has some information on that -
Scroll down to page 18 in the above link.
Also, the following is taken from the Equality and Human Rights Paper, directed at employers but it outlines what is generally expected of them -
"Ensure that anyone involved in making pay-related decisions has a full understanding of equal pay issues. If necessary, send them on a training course or seek professional advice from a body such as Acas."
I do think that acas will be able to advise you further - links below -
Good luck. Don't let your employer get away with such disparity. It's not good for anyone's morale, as well as being rubbish for your paypacket.
Also no legal right to be paid the same as the person you are covering on maternity leave.
Telling someone what they want want to hear isn't helpful.
Nothing posted here by the OP suggests that the employer is acting unlawfully.