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Equality North East

Bill set to expose gender pay gap

Many employers will be made to reveal how much they pay men compared with women, under the Equalities Bill.

Firms employing at least 250 staff would be required to publish average hourly rates for men and women by 2013.

The Bill also aims to tackle discrimination against the elderly and people from working class backgrounds.

It has been backed by charities for the elderly but business groups called for a moratorium on new employment law and said it could delay economic recovery.

Minister for Equality Harriet Harman pledged the bill would help to "narrow the gap between rich and poor and make Britain more equal".

'Coming clean'

She told the BBC businesses would have until 2013 to voluntarily publish pay rates but added "old prejudices" had to be tackled if the economy was to prosper.

She also said "gagging clauses" - under which employees are ordered not to reveal details of their pay - would be banned under the Bill.

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April 27, 2009

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