Equal Pay? - Not in Tennis Apparently

Peninsula Team

July 03 2012

Equal PayFormer Professional Tennis Player Goran Ivanisevic has publicly stated that current mens players should complain about their rate of pay in comparison to their female counterparts. Ivanisevic argues the male game is more entertaining yet the women's game is paid more than the men. This argument was sparked when ATP player council member Gilles Simon argued the men's game is more entertaining than the women's and that should be reflected in the financial rewards, and this is what prompted Ivanisevic to weigh in with his comments. Professional sportsmen and women are under different regulations from that of traditional employees. Sports teams can justify paying a person from another country more or less than a comparable employee and not risk a claim of discrimination as essentially the free market dictates what a sportsperson can earn in a role. In the workplace Equal pay is one of the foundations of best practice in the workplace with staff receiving equal pay regardless of gender or any other discriminatory ground. We have recently seen the Agency Workers Act base the principles of the legislation on this point that Agency staff would receive equal pay to their comparable permanent staff. Employers base this principle on the Employment Equality Act 1998, Section 19 which states 19.—(1) It shall be a term of the contract under which A is employed that, subject to this Act, A shall at any time be entitled to the same rate of remuneration for the work which A is employed to do as B who, at that or any other relevant time, is employed to do like work by the same or an associated employer. The timeframes referred to have also been broadened by the 2004 Act, which defines the relevant time as any time during the three years which precede, or three years that follow the time in question. It is vital that employers recognise their responsiblity to ensure there is equality amongst the workforce, and that any inequalities are related to skills and responsibilities, and cannot be attributed to any of the nine grounds for discrimination (gender, civil status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, race, or membership of the traveller community)

Suggested Resources