Hundreds of British companies will face legal action after failing to comply with a new requirement to report the pay gap between male and female staff.
All companies and charities with more than 250 employees are now legally required to publish those details on their own websites and a government site dedicated to the topic.
According to Britain’s Equality Watchdog, many failed to do so by an extended deadline that expired this week, the Equality and Human Rights Commission said in a statement.
“Breach of these regulations is breaking the law and we’ve always been clear we will enforce with zero tolerance,” said its chief executive Rebecca Hilsenrath in a statement.
“Last month, we contacted almost 1,500 businesses to commence enforcement proceedings and as a result the number of employers facing investigation is now under 500.”
Men in Britain earn on average 18.4 percent more than women, according to government data published last year.
Around 11,000 employers had published their pay details by the extended deadline, which expired on Monday.
Companies are not required to break down the data in detail, leading to criticism that the average figures could obscure or exaggerate demographic explanations for disparities. Yet they mark a turning point for women in the workplace, advocates say.
Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation