The BBC is understood to be proposing a pay cap of £320,000 for its news presenters in response to the outcry gender pay equality.
BBC News reports that the proposed upper limit on pay has not been “fully signed off” yet but is likely to only apply to full-time, on-air staff, including correspondents, presenters and editors.
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The move comes ahead of a pay review of on-air talent at the BBC, expected to be published today.
A group of more than 170 female producers and presenters at the corporation have submitted written evidence to the department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee telling MPs they had faced “veiled threats” while trying to raise the subject of equal pay.
The National Union of Journalists has also accused the BBC of a “lack of transparency” over pay and claims its members have been “deliberately misled” by management over their salary levels.
The BBC Women group said it believes the corporation has, over many years, “failed to pay men and women equally for equal work” in breach of equality legislation.
The issue of equal pay first arose after the BBC was forced to publish a list of its highest earning on-air talent. An independent pay audit later revealed a 9 per cent gender pay gap among rank and file staff.
BBC China editor Carrie Gracie resigned from her role earlier this month after finding out she was paid less than other international editors who were male and described pay culture at the BBC as “secretive and illegal”.
Gracie and BBC Director General Lord Hall will face questions from the DCMS Committee, chaired by Damian Collins MP, on Wednesday.
A BBC spokesperson said it corporation was “not getting into debates at the moment on pay band levels”.
They added: “The BBC is committed to equal pay, and we don’t accept the assertion we have not been complying with the Equality Act, nor do we offer inferior contracts based on someone’s gender or race.”