According to a new report from the National Partnership for Women & Families, American women are still earning only 77 cents for every dollar a man earns for performing comparable work. Without congressional action, it’s estimated that at the current rate the wage gap is closing, women won’t be paid equally for more than four decades. And if the pay gap continues, women will never catch up. A lower starting salary doesn’t just mean a smaller paycheck—it means a smaller pension, a diminished 401(k), and smaller Social Security check benefits. The sex discrimination that begins at hiring continues for life. There’s neither fair nor right.
John F. Kennedy signed the Equal Pay Act into law nearly fifty years ago, making it illegal for employers to pay men and women different wages for the same work, women have made only minor gains against the salaries earned by men for performing the same work as the EPA has numerous loopholes and challenges that may it too difficult to remedy gender pay disparity as a practical matter. The deck is stacked against women who are paid discriminatorily.
The Paycheck Fairness Act would remedy many of those weaknesses in the EPA, but it’s been blocked by Republican lawmakers for the past 8 years in a row, including just this month, when every single GOP congressman again showed the low esteem in which they hold all women. Call your elected representative and let him know who you feel about gender pay equality.