Equal pay appeal launched by Birmingham City Council

Birmingham City Council building The women worked as cooks, cleaners, caterers and care staff

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A council has lodged an application for permission to appeal against a court's decision on equal pay claims for female workers.

The case, which was heard at the Court of Appeal, involved 174 former employees of Birmingham City Council.

A council spokesman said the council had lodged the application with the Supreme Court to see if it could appeal and was currently awaiting the result.

He said there was no timescale for when a decision might be reached.

The ruling, made in November 2011, opened the way for potential claimants in both the private and public sector who thought their claims were outside tribunal time limits to pursue actions for compensation.

Excluded from bonuses

Cases must normally be heard within six months at Employment Tribunal, but six years at the High Court.

Birmingham City Council had appealed against a deputy High Court judge's ruling in December 2010 that the High Court had jurisdiction to determine the claims.

Appeal judges unanimously ruled the council had failed to establish that the deputy judge's ruling on the 1970 Equal Pay Act was wrong or in any way flawed.

The council said at the time it was "disappointed".

The council spokesman said because an application had been submitted the authority had not paid out any money to the claimants.

The women, who worked as cooks, cleaners, caterers and care staff, claimed they were excluded from getting bonuses handed out to employees in traditionally male-dominated jobs.

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