Section 149 of the Equality Act 2010 provides for the Public Sector Equality Duty (the General Duty).  Section 153 of the Act provides powers devolved to Welsh and Scottish Ministers to impose specific public sector equality duties.  The English specific duties  originally had two duties, the first of which required public authorities with more than 150 employees to publish information to demonstrate compliance with the General Duty in 2012 and every year after that in relation to it employees and others impacted by their policies and practices. Public authorities are also required to publish at least one objective they intend to undertake to fulfil the Duty.  There were no specific duties in relation to pay until the specific duties for English public authorities were extended in 2017 in relation to gender pay gap reporting to mirror Section Gender Pay Gap Reporting Regulations 2017 for private sector employers.

The Welsh specific duties are more extensive than the English duties, twenty in total.  In relation to pay equality, the Welsh Duties require public authorities to address the causes of pay gaps for employees who have any of the protected characteristics and must collect information on differences in pay and publish an action plan on how it will address them.

For a more detailed discussion of the Welsh context see Dr Alison Parken’s report ‘Addressing Pay Inequalities in Wales: Past, Present and Future’,