Column: BBC equality headline sends wrong signal

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When the BBC recently published a headline “Male salaries could face wage cut” – aimed at achieving economic parity for women – I questioned why can’t women salaries go up instead?

If men are good enough to receive these salaries, why aren’t women? The point is even the headline is laced with gender stereotyping and discrimination.

Until philosophy at the top changes, nothing will change for these employees

That sums up exactly what the problem is with the BBC, and all other similar employers.

Their philosophy, in terms of equality, is so warped at the top.

In my view the BBC are potentially setting themselves up for the mother of all legal challenges, instead of trying to work out how to make society and employees’ working environment fairer.

Frankly, it’s not rocket science! A happier and more equal workforce is a healthier and more productive workforce.

They must stop treating women as second grade employees.

That said, if you’re an employee from a Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic background, and you work for an organisation with a mono-cultural board with a warped philosophy, your chances of fairness and equal pay will hardly ever reach the top.

A recent government-backed study by Lady McGregor-Smith found helping black and minority ethnic people to progress in their careers at the same rate as their white counterparts could add £24bn to UK economy each year.

The report into race in the workplace found recruitment processes had a tendency by managers to promote people similar to themselves and, in some cases, outright discrimination had all held back workers from BAME backgrounds.

They suffer from multiple discrimination.

Until the philosophy at the top changes, nothing will change for these employees.

It is not market forces that drives these discrimination practices, it is methods that allow recruitment processes to be circumvented without ever addressing the inequality.

The BBC headline was probably structured, the response speaks to the philosophy and character of those people privileged to lead these organisations.

Until we can open up discussion about philosophy, the conversation on equality will not move on beyond a false headline.