It’s time to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act!

Published: March 14, 2024

On March 9, 2023, the Paycheck Fairness Act (H.R. 17/ S. 728) was reintroduced in Congress. AAUW calls on all elected officials to listen to voters, who overwhelming support pay equity, and work to pass this important bill.

You've heard the statistics — on average, women working full time in the United States are paid just 84% of what men are paid, and the gap is even wider for many women of color. When we expand how this is calculated to include a broader cross-section of women, including those who work part time or seasonally, we represent a more accurate picture of how pay inequality impacts diverse communities: the pay gap widens even further to 78 cents. Despite federal and state equal pay laws, the gender pay gap persists. But Congressional action can help change this. The Paycheck Fairness Act would take meaningful steps to update and strengthen the Equal Pay Act of 1963 to help close the gender pay gap, including:

• closing loopholes that have weakened the law over time to allow employers to justify paying workers unfairly,
• creating more robust remedies for those who have suffered discrimination,
• preventing employers from retaliating against workers who discuss or disclose their wages,
• prohibiting employers from relying on salary history to set wages, and
• providing much needed training and technical assistance, as well as data collection and research.

The gender pay gap is persistent and can only be addressed if women have the tools they need to challenge discrimination and employers have the incentives they need to comply with the law. It's time for Congress to make real change for all workers by passing the Paycheck Fairness Act. Read more here.

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