Equal Pay Laws Could Be Scrapped After Brexit

Equal pay laws could be scrapped after Brexit, women’s rights groups warn
‘The whole legal edifice is vulnerable,’ according to Michael Ford, a professor of employment law at the University of Bristol Law School.

Women won a record number of seats in the general election in June, but women’s groups fear Britain’s planned departure from the European Union could roll back decades of other meaningful advances for working women.

After Brexit, the UK won’t have to adhere to the EU’s minimum standards for worker protections, many of which are stronger than member countries might enact on their own. The EU also gives workers the right to appeal cases and claims to the European Court of Justice, the highest authority when it comes to interpreting EU law and its application.

There would be nothing to keep Britain from putting caps on gender discrimination claims or weakening the burden of proof for pay discrimination, for example. “The whole legal edifice is vulnerable,” according to Michael Ford, a professor of employment law at the University of Bristol Law School.

Theresa May has promised to maintain women’s rights, and the UK already exceeds EU minimum standards in some areas, including the length of paid maternity leave.

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Source: Independent, Retrieved 16 July 2017, http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/equal-pay-laws-scrapped-after-brexit-gender-gap-employment-discrimination-womens-rights-groups-a7840411.html

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