DeLauro, Murray Mark 55th Anniversary of the Equal Pay Act
WASHINGTON, DC (June 7, 2018)— Ahead of the 55th anniversary of the Equal Pay Act on Sunday, June 10, Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (CT-03) and Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) released the following statements marking the anniversary and calling for the passage of the Paycheck Fairness Act.
Despite making up half the workforce, women in America still make just 80 cents, on average, for every dollar earned by a man. The gap is even wider for women without the protection of a union contract and women of color, with African American women making 63 cents on the dollar, and Hispanic women making only 54 cents, on average, compared with white men.
The Equal Pay Act amended the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 to abolish pay discrimination based on sex. However, loopholes in the Equal Pay Act have allowed pay discrepancies to remain, highlighting the need for Congressional action on the Paycheck Fairness Act—legislation DeLauro and Murray have introduced together.
“While the Equal Pay Act allowed for progress to be made in closing the wage gap, the wage gap still persists for too many women,” said Congresswoman DeLauro. “Over the past two decades, women have made a growing share of family income in all family types. That is why when women make less money for the same work, it not only affects them—it affects families and our economy as a whole. Workers in the same job—regardless of gender—should have the same pay, and the Paycheck Fairness Act is a strong step forward in ensuring that we close the wage gap once and for all. Working families cannot afford to wait any longer.”
“The Equal Pay Act was a step in the right direction, but more than five decades later, far too many women are still paid less than their male coworkers for the same work,” said Senator Murray. “When women succeed, families, communities, and our economy succeeds—that’s why I’m fighting to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act to close the wage gap and ensure that every woman in the United States finally gets the fair pay she is owed for her work.”
The Paycheck Fairness Act would strengthen and close loopholes in the Equal Pay Act of 1963 by holding employers accountable for discriminatory practices, ending the practice of pay secrecy, easing workers’ ability to individually or jointly challenge pay discrimination, strengthening the available remedies for wronged employees, and prohibiting employers from seeking the salary history of prospective employees. The House legislation has 198 cosponsors (introduced with every Democratic Member of the House and one Republican Member) and the Senate legislation has 47 cosponsors.