Pay Equity Advisor Blog

A source of insights, news and strategy on pay equity matters

First introduced in Congress in 1997, and several times since, the Paycheck Fairness Act is again under consideration by Congress (S. 270/H.R. 7). If enacted, the bill would attempt to close the gender pay gap by: Implementing a wage history ban With limited exceptions, employers would be prohibited from requesting or relying on the wage history of a prospective employee. Limiting employers’ defenses against a claim of unequal pay To defend a claim, an employer…
Bipartisan bills introduced in both houses of the South Carolina General Assembly propose allowing workers and job applicants to bring suit against employers for pay inequality and wage secrecy. The Act to Establish Pay Equity, introduced as Senate Bill 372 along with its similar companion in the House, would expand employees’ and applicants’ rights regarding pay disparity, wage transparency, and prohibit reliance on prior pay in determining an applicant’s job offer. The federal Equal…
On January 17, 2019, Colorado Senate Democrats introduced the “Equal Pay for Equal Work Act” (SB 19-085) to prohibit a wage differential based on an employee’s sex. The bill also contains a salary history ban and pay transparency requirements. If passed, this would be among the most aggressive equal pay laws in the nation. Key provisions of SB 19-085 include: Removing enforcement authority from the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment and allowing…
One week after taking office, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed a directive that prohibits state departments and agencies from asking about current or previous salaries until after extending a conditional offer of employment with proposed salary. Executive Directive No. 2019-10, intended to ensure equal pay for equal work among state employees, went into effect immediately upon receiving the governor’s signature on January 8, 2019. The directive also prohibits public employers from searching public records…
Joining New York City, Albany County, and Westchester County, Suffolk County has become the latest jurisdiction in New York to pass a bill that prevents employers from inquiring into the salary and benefits history of job applicants. Designed to establish pay equality and to “break the cycle of wage discrimination,” the Restricting Information on Salaries and Earnings Act, or RISE Act, would prohibit any employer in Suffolk County from requesting or seeking the wage history…
A free service to help provide legal advice to female low-income earners on pay equity matters is now available in the United Kingdom. The Equal Pay Advice Service, or “EPAS,” went into operation on November 9, 2018, in time for the UK’s Equal Pay Day (the day in the year when women in the UK effectively begin to work for free) and the announcement of the UK’s pay equity legislation. The United Kingdom, in…
As previously reported here, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit held in September that Equal Pay Act (EPA) plaintiffs must show not only that they are receiving less pay than similarly situated male colleagues, but that the pay differential is “historically or presently based on sex.” This holding departed from the decisions of other federal courts of appeals and prompted a request for en banc review by…
Fair pay initiatives continue to sweep the globe. Canada is the latest to consider legislation. On October 29, 2018, the Government of Canada announced the introduction of an “Act to Establish a Proactive Pay Equity Regime within the Federal Public and Private Sectors (Pay Equity Act).” The Act would address a number of legislative findings on gender pay equity in Canada, including the following: In 2017, women working full-time for hourly wages made 88.5 cents…
The courts are making it increasingly difficult for employers to prevail on equal pay discrimination claims based on the “factor other than sex” affirmative defense. One recent example is the decision in EEOC v. Maryland Ins. Admin., 879 F.3d 114 (4th Cir. 2018), from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. There, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed suit against the Maryland Insurance Administration (MIA) on behalf of three female fraud investigators alleging…