Workplace discrimination costs UK £127bn a year, says report

6 Mar 18

Discrimination in the workplace costs the UK economy £127bn in lost output each year, according to a report from the Centre for Economics and Business Research.

A study conducted by the economics consultancy, for the inclusion membership organisation Involve, found that gender discrimination was particularly costly to the UK economy, contributing to £123bn out of the £127bn.

Using data from the Office for National Statistics, Cebr also found £2.6bn was lost as a result of discrimination against ethnic minorities and £2bn due to discrimination regarding sexual orientation.

Christian Jaccarini, economist at the Cebr, said: “Although the UK is more diverse than ever, discrimination is still costing the economy enormously.

“In fact, our upper-bound estimate finds that UK GDP would be around 7% higher if workplace discrimination based on gender, sexual orientation and ethnicity was eliminated.

“At the economy’s current rate, that growth would take just under four years to achieve.”

By comparing ONS data with the diversity policies of 517 UK workplaces, Cebr found that firms with the most developed diversity policies are 15 percentage points more likely to financially outperform those with less of a diversity focus.

Also, the UK’s most diverse workplaces are 12 percentage points more likely to financially outperform their industry average than the least diverse firms.

From April this year, companies with 250 or more employees will be required by law to publish their pay gap information.

Seven government departments were revealed to have a gender pay gap of more than 10%, according to a series of reports released under equalities legislation in December last year

The Department for Education was the first government department to publish its gender pay gap and bonus pay gap in June last year

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