The Government first announced plans for a shared ownership right to buy in October 2019. At the time the sector raised concerns about the impact the plans would have on housing associations ability to borrow. An election and a pandemic later the Government announced, during the CIH Housing Festival last week, the return of the right to shared ownership as part of its Affordable Homes Programme (AHP).
The requirements largely mirror those being imposed on the private sector, reported in our briefing in October 2016: Gender Pay Reporting is coming – are you ready?. However, they are being introduced as part of the existing public sector equality duty rather than as a stand-alone requirement, but will mean little difference in practice.
The duty will apply to specific public authorities listed in Schedule 2 of the Regulations (which includes the governing bodies of educational establishments, local authorities and regulators). As in the private sector, the duty will only apply where there are 250 or more employees at that establishment.
The main difference to the private-sector duty is that the public sector will have a different ‘snapshot date’ for reporting of 31 March 2017. Otherwise, the obligations and calculations are the same.
What should you do now?
Whilst the private and public sector regulations required parliamentary approval, we expect them to be implemented with very little change. We are urging all employers in the public and private sectors to take steps now to understand in more detail how the Gender Pay Regulations will affect them. Our top tips are to:
- Carry out in-depth assessments of your workforce to establish who may be captured as an “employee” and what will be regarded as “pay” in light of the revised Regulations;
- Carry out a pay audit to identify what your likely gender pay gap will be and the reasons for this;
- Consider what information you will want to add to any gender pay report, to set your figures in context, and explain an unusual pay gap;
- Start to plan a strategy to address any gender pay gap;
- Consider your communication strategy, both internally and externally, for when you publish your gender pay gap figure; and
- If possible, benchmark your gender pay gap within your industry or against comparable public bodies to identify whether your figures are likely to be an issue.
For further information
For further information about what you can do now to prepare for gender pay reporting, please contact Kate Watkins.
Two final pieces of the possession jigsaw have been published on 15 September 2020. Mr Justice Knowles’ working group on possession proceedings has issued its guidance on the “overall arrangements” for possession proceedings.
One change proposed by the Building Safety Bill is the introduction of a duty holder regime, which will see statutory responsibility for the safety of higher risk buildings placed on key individuals
Throughout this pandemic, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has been publishing various “Statements on Coronavirus” (Statements) which provide guidance on consumer rights during this time.
A recent increase in COVID-19 cases in the UK means new measures are being put in place in an effort to reduce the risk of a second wave. Whilst the impact of COVID-19 continues to be felt, it is important to remain focused on the sector’s road to recovery.
Sometimes half an hour at a conference gives you the reality that has been staring you in the face all along. That was my experience watching “Change is on the Horizon”
Following our recent e-briefing on Possession Notices, Helen Tucker and Emilie Pownall from our housing litigation team discuss the impact of the changes on social landlords.
Not only has the possession stay been extended until 20 September, the notice periods to be given to tenants has been extended in certain circumstances with some important exceptions.
The Court has confirmed that a party cannot withhold its consent in order to re-write the original bargain.
Following the Grenfell Tower tragedy, building safety continues to be a key concern for social housing providers and their residents.
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