By Jack Tuckner
A woman working full-time is still making 77 cents on average against each $1 a man earns working full-time doing comparable work. A bill to remedy this injustice is called the Paycheck Fairness Act, but Republicans have repeatedly blocked it, despite strong support from the White House and Democrats.
The Paycheck Fairness Act would strengthen the Equal Pay Act, because it contains practical steps for promoting fair pay for women. It would enhance the Court remedies available for victims of gender-based discrimination, and it would put the burden on employers to demonstrate why a woman is being paid less than a man for performing comparable work, punishing employers if they retaliate against employees for sharing salary information, and allowing enhanced monetary compensation if discrimination or retaliation is proved in Court. Last April, every single Republican voted against the Paycheck Fairness Act (the same corporate-owned hucksters who recently voted against raising the minimum wage, or allowing students to refinance their student loans). The midterm elections are around the corner, so Senate Democrats are giving Republicans another shot to ensure women earn equal pay for equal work. This critical vote is expected to occur this Monday, September 15, but don’t hold your breath waiting for a little common sense justice. There’s too much money and power pushing back; though of course, closing the wage gap and raising the minimum wage helps everyone, not just the grossly underpaid, but also their children, their families, and the entire economy as a result.
I want my daughters, sisters, mother and wife to earn a salary and benefits equal to what some shmendrick guy earns for performing the same job. I want them to earn what they’re worth. Don’t you want that for the women in your life? Ask a Republican you love (or one who represents you) why they’re dead set against equal pay for women—maybe they can explain it so you’ll understand it. Please let me know if they do. I’ll wait.