A female sub editor at a regional newspaper hub is being paid £5,000 less than her male colleagues.
The same employer is paying a junior reporter with two years experience £2,000 less than two new, junior employees on a sister newspaper.
The Blog has agreed not to name those involved – or the company – as the staff members fear such revelations could damage their careers.
But the shocking way in which the company, whose chief executive holds a senior position in the Newspaper Society, has treated junior staff members is symptomatic of the way employees have been held to ransom during the recession.
There is a ‘if you don’t like it, you can leave’ attitude running through regional press management, based on the premise ‘you are lucky to have a job’.
The case in question saw the press giant take control of a neighbouring title in December 2008. It took over the contracts of it’s staff and moved them to a central hub – but no change was made to the pay of those new employees; either to recognise their increased travel or to move them in line with existing workers.
That means the female sub stayed on £17,000 per year, while her new male colleagues were earning between £22 and £24,000.
The reporter, who currently writes the weekly paper he works for on his own despite the fact it is a 80 page plus beast, earns £12,000.
This was despite his new employees having agreed a £14,000 minimum for juniors with the group’s NUJ chapel.
When two new reporters were taken on at the Hub at the start of this year they were put straight onto this bottom rung – earning themselves £2,000 a year more than their senior colleague.
Despite protests from the reporter and promises from management the situation has not changed.
It is not the first time the publisher in question has been involved in such wage disparities.
Two years ago a senior reporter at one of it’s papers left to go into PR after she found out a junior colleague was being paid £2,000 more than her.
A source who has recently the Hub to move to another paper told The Blog: “It’s an absolute disgrace.
“Everyone in the office knows these two workers earn less than their mates, but management couldn’t care less.
“There is a feeling that if anyone protests they will be made to feel guilty for asking for money in a recession, but this is about basic equality.”
* Does anyone know any similar wage discrepancies in the media? Email The Blog on firstname.lastname@example.org with details
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