Despite tremendous growth in select sectors, women are still
only paid 77 percent of what their male counterparts make according to the
American Association of University Women. Women earn less for numerous reasons
including field of study, occupation, and the number of hours they work during
the work week. The Paycheck Fairness Act is now being introduced for the third
time in four years in the United States Senate.
Leading the charge, Senator Barbara Mikulski and Representative Rosa
DeLauro are aiming to prohibit companies from retaliating against workers who
discuss salary information. The law also requires employers to prove pay
discrepancies among workers, despite race, age, gender, or any other
demographic information. It would also require businesses to tie pay to job
As we discussed last week in The
Performance Review Formal or Informal employers are avoiding crucial
conversations and are creeping further away from connecting job performance
with pay increases. The Lilly
Ledbetter Act was not enough to fix the gender gap and these two crusaders
are aiming to end pay discrimination once and for all. Workers are currently
discouraged from sharing any type of pay information with their co-workers, as
many employers know it will create inner office conflict and in some cases termination
is a result.
Senator DeLauro, who has been the one responsible for
introducing the Paycheck Fairness Act for each of the past eight congresses, designed
this piece of legislation to help women who believe themselves to be a part of gender-based
wage discrimination. Her dedication to this topic is both revered and
discouraged. Some relate the notion of repeatedly banging their head against
the wall to DeLauro’s attempt to demolish the gender gap legally. This
sensitive topic could very well be one of those introduced time and time again
until enough votes are received to move it along in parliamentary procedure.
Will this be the final
time this bill is being introduced into the Senate or will it be taken to its 9th congressional term? Only time will tell.