Sainsbury’s shop floor workers are said to be a step closer to winning an equal pay case.
Solicitors said the firm has conceded the workers can compare their roles to that of colleagues in distribution centres.
Over 3700 Sainsbury’s workers, represented by law firm Leigh Day, have brought equal value claims against the company arguing that their work is as demanding as distribution centre roles.
According to the firm, the difference in hourly pay for shop floor workers and those in a distribution centre can range between £1.50 to £4 an hour.
“This is a huge milestone for Sainsbury’s shop floor workers,” Leigh Day solicitor Mike Keenan said.
“Now that Sainsbury’s finally agrees shop floor workers compare their roles to workers in distribution centres, we can focus on what’s at the heart of these claims – whether the work is of equal value.”
A Sainsbury’s spokesperson added: “We will continue to robustly defend our position in this litigation because we stand by our position that roles in stores and depots are fundamentally different.”
Earlier this year, thousands of Tesco shop floor workers, also represented by Leigh Day, won a legal argument in their fight for equal pay when the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) ruled that the ‘single source’ test applies to businesses in the UK.
This means a worker can compare their job role with somebody working in a different business if a ‘single source’ has the power to correct the difference in pay.
This follows a CJEU ruling handed down by the Supreme Court which confirmed that Big 4 grocer Asda’s shop floor workers can compare their roles to those of their colleagues in distribution centres for equal pay.
with PA Wires