Police watchdog chief suing Priti Patel in race row over claims he is paid less because he is white
A white man who inspects London Met Police is suing Home Secretary Priti Patel for racial and gender discrimination - despite earning £140,000 a year - because this is less than his black, female work collegue, Wendy Williams, who ears £185,000 a year.
Ms Patel, however, insists the lower salary is due to a Home Office drive to reduce salaries for senior staff.
Lawyers for Priti Patel had tried to have the hearing held in private, claiming details of pay negotiations were private, but Mr Justice Griffiths ordered that the entire case be heard in public and the final judgment published in full so all can understand the arguments in the case.
Setting out Mr Parr’s claim, the judge said: 'Mr Parr is one of five people currently appointed to the office of one of Her Majesty’s Inspectors of Constabulary (HMI).
'In 2018, he began proceedings in the Employment Tribunal, claiming equal pay and, further or alternatively, alleging race and sex discrimination.
'His named comparator is the HMI appointed before him, who is a woman of BME (black or ethnic minority) heritage.
'The Home Secretary admits that he does ‘like work’ within the meaning of the Equality Act 2010 and that he is paid less, but contends that the reason for the discrepancy in salaries, which are apparently individually negotiated for each HMI, is a pay policy which aims to reduce senior salaries.'
The case first went before a tribunal last June, when an order was made that evidence of pay negotiations with Ms Williams be heard in secret and left out of the final judgment.
But when the full trial of Mr Parr’s pay claim began in January, the order was overturned after the tribunal said the public would never be able to understand the case without hearing the details of the negotiations.
The case will return to the employment tribunal for Mr Parr’s pay claim to be heard in full.