According to the Treasury Select Committee, investigations into non-compliance with the Gender Pay Gap reporting obligations could begin in June.
The CEO of the Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), Rebecca Hilsenrath, sent a letter to the Chair of the Treasury Select Committee, Nicky Morgan, verifying that the EHRC plans to conduct investigations at the start of June. The letter also confirms the EHRC will publish information on employers who reach the investigation stage. This means the information will be accessible to members of the public and the media.
All private sector organisations that employ 250 people or more had to publish their Gender Pay Gap report to the Government’s gender pay gap services before 4th April 2018. The deadline for public sector employers was 30th March.
A reported 1,500 organisations are believed to have missed the reporting deadline. Organisations were warned prior to the deadline they could face a fine or investigation if they failed to publish their data.
The letter states: “The Commission has the power to take enforcement action against any employer who does not comply with the Regulations. The next stage for private sector employers will be an investigation under section 20 of the Equality Act 2006, in which we establish whether an employer has committed an unlawful act”.
“If we conclude that it has done so, we will issue an unlawful act notice. If they do not comply with the notice, we will apply for a court order requiring them to do so. Breach of this court order is punishable upon conviction with a level 5 (unlimited) fine”.
Associate Director from RSM Employer Services Limited, Kerri Constable, has warned: “Clearly, the EHRC is not wasting any time in launching investigations into any private sector companies that it suspects of being in breach of the new rules. Swift action will need to be taken by affected companies if they wish to avoid being publicly named”.
Organisations who are investigated could risk reputational damage. This isn’t beneficial as it could influence their customers use their competitors for business instead. Also, it is more than likely to prevent individuals applying for a job at the organisation if they know men and women aren’t paid equally. This restricts organisations from hiring talented candidates.
Click here to read our article: “The EHRC reveals organisations will receive unlimited fines for missing the gender pay deadline”.
If you have any questions regarding this post, please get in touch with a member of the HPC team.
Phone: 0844 800 5932