For Immediate Release
ACLU Marks Equal Pay Day
WASHINGTON - The American Civil Liberties Union recognizes Equal Pay Day today,
the day that marks how far a woman would have to have worked into 2010
to earn the same as a man did in just 2009. On this year’s Equal Pay
Day, the ACLU urges the Senate to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act (S.
182), a bill which would provide a much needed update to the Equal Pay
Act of 1963, closing loopholes in the current law, strengthening weak
remedies and taking steps to finally close the wage gap.
“It’s unacceptable that nearly 50 years after the Equal Pay Act
became law, women, on average, still make only 77 cents for every
dollar earned by a man,” said Laura W. Murphy, Director of the ACLU
Washington Legislative Office. “The Paycheck Fairness Act is the way to
level the playing field by finally establishing equality in the
American workplace and ensuring that anyone, regardless of gender, can
see his or her work rewarded with a fair paycheck. Every worker in
America deserves to bring home equal pay for equal work.”
The Paycheck Fairness Act would provide workers with the tools they
need to ensure equal compensation, including fair remedies, additional
enforcement tools and technical assistance and training for both
employers and employees. Last year, the House of Representatives
overwhelmingly passed the Paycheck Fairness Act; now the Senate has
turned its attention to closing the wage gap, holding a hearing earlier
this month on paycheck equality. The Paycheck Fairness Act has 36
co-sponsors in the Senate and is poised for passage. The ACLU calls on
the Senate to take swift action on the Paycheck Fairness Act so that
women can bring home the pay they have rightfully earned.
“American women have waited long enough for fair compensation,” said
Deborah J. Vagins, ACLU Legislative Counsel. “In this economic climate,
there is no better time to swiftly pass this law. Allowing women to
bring home fair pay is not only fundamental to American ideals of
equality, it is necessary for families’ economic security and to the
nation's economic recovery. Pay discrimination forces single-female
households and families dependent on two wage earners to live on less
than they deserve. Wage discrimination also reduces women’s retirement
income. The Paycheck Fairness Act is an important safety net for
working families, and we urge the Senate to move this bill forward.”
A letter from the ACLU to the Senate in support of the Paycheck Fairness Act is available at:
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The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) conserves America's original civic values working in courts, legislatures and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in the United States by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.