ACLU Observes Equal Pay Tuesday With Call For Pay Fairness Law

April 27, 2009 12:00 am


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WASHINGTON – To mark Equal Pay Day tomorrow, April 28, the American Civil Liberties Union calls for the passage of a strong law to eradicate pay discrimination against women. On a day meant to raise awareness about the continuing pay gap between the genders, members of the ACLU plan to ask their Senators in emails, calls and letters to pass a bill addressing pay discrimination, known as S. 182, the Paycheck Fairness Act. This legislation would provide a much needed update to the Equal Pay Act of 1963, by closing loopholes and strengthening its weak remedies over 45 years.

At the beginning of this Congress, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed the Act by a bipartisan vote of 256-163. Right before the vote, many of the bill’s 198 co-sponsors took to the House floor and quoted the U.S. Census Bureau statistic that working women earn an average of only 78 cents for every dollar men earn.

The following can be attributed to Caroline Fredrickson, Director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office:

“Equal Pay Day is a day of action for ACLU members around the country to contact their Senators about supporting the Paycheck Fairness Act. Passing this law is critical for working women during this economic crisis. Women tend to be hurt first and worst during economic downturns. Pay discrimination forces single-mothers and families dependent on two wage earners to live on less than they deserve. Wage discrimination also reduces women’s retirement income. This Act is an important safety net for working families.”

For the ACLU’s letter to the Senate on the Paycheck Fairness Act, S. 182, go to www.aclu.org/womensrights/employ/39478leg20090427.html.

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