BBC China Editor Leaves UK Pubcaster In Gender Pay Row

BBC                   Carrie Gracie'For far too long a secretive and illegal BBC pay culture has inflicted dishonourable choices on those who enforce

The pay row began in the middle of 2017 when the BBC published a list of its top-earning stars, which revealed that only a third were women and the top seven were all men.

After 30-year veteran Gracie revealed in an open letter on her website that she did not trust BBC management to deal with gender inequality, after a proposed pay increase left her still well behind the company's male worldwide editors, she received support on social media from many of her colleagues, including Today presenter Mishal Husain and Newsnight host Evan Davis, with many using the hashtag #istandwithcarrie. She said those who complained faced the threat of retaliation and even dismissal, while others were either bogged down in arbitration talks or offered new pay packages on condition the terms remained secret. "I kept saying to my managers I didn't need more money, I just needed to be equal". "For six months it has made me very unhappy, it's been a huge amount of work to try and put it right".

She said she had called for the corporation's worldwide editors to be paid equally, after pay levels were revealed a year ago. "I'm not going to not shine a light when I find a problem in my home organisation that needs saying".

Ms Gracie has resigned her position in Beijing, but continues to work for the BBC in her former post in their London newsroom.

Carrie Gracie's departure is the latest aftershock from the BBC's forced publication a year ago of pay levels for its top earners that showed two-thirds of those in the top bracket were men.

The BBC, however, in a statement said there was "no systemic discrimination against women".

"It is pay discrimination and it is illegal".

"In a letter posted on her blog, Gracie accused the BBC of 'breaking equality law" and announced that she was quitting her job after serving the organization for three decades.

The corporation published a series of pay reviews and audits in October which concluded that men were being paid 9.3% more than women at the BBC on average - far less than the United Kingdom average of 18.1% - and that there is "no systemic discrimination against women" at the corporation. This arbitration, for example, could conclude whether the China and North America editors should be paid the same and make similar calls elsewhere.

They added: "A significant number of organisations have now published their gender pay figures showing that we are performing considerably better than many and are well below the national average".

Fellow female BBC journalists including Kirsty Wark, Clare Balding, Emily Maitlis and Sarah Montague have all tweeted in support of Ms Gracie's case.

Gracie's letter also shows discontent at how individual cases are being dealt with.

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