Employment Discrimination

Employment Discrimination

Employment Discrimination laws seek to prevent discrimination based on race, sex, religion, national origin, physical disability, and age. A growing body of law also seeks to prevent employment discrimination based on sexual orientation. Discriminatory practices include bias in hiring, promotion, job assignment, termination, compensation, retaliation, and various types of harassment.

Cry Wolf Quotes

We have had several young men start out as secretaries and later rise to positions of importance. …When these young men started, and as they progressed, I am certain that their wages were higher than some female secretaries doing equal or superior work. But we also knew that there was a possible potential of their rising to more important jobs, supervising a large number of men. If this law is passed, we will hire women for all secretarial positions and be deprived of this avenue of advancement.

-
William Miller representative of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Testimony, House Hearing.
03/26/1963 | Full Details | Law(s): Equal Pay Act

Proponents of Federal equal pay at times say that variations in State laws indicate a need for a Federal law which will promote uniformity. Such a contention is unsound. A certain amount of experimentation is desirable to find the type of law that works best. The efforts in the 22 States [with equal pay laws already on the books] amount, in effect, to laboratories of experiment….This opportunity for the 50 States to learn from one another is highly desirable. It would be forever lost once Federal legislation takes effect.

-
William Miller representative of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Testimony, House Hearing.
03/26/1963 | Full Details | Law(s): Equal Pay Act

The people of each state, and they alone, are best qualified to judge whether conditions in their own jurisdiction are such that there is social need for an equal pay law….Any view that only the Federal Government can handle this problem shows a distrust of the States and indicates an unfortunate trend toward creating an over-centralized, top-heavy government by bringing all problems to Washington.

-
William Miller representative of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Testimony, House Hearing.
03/26/1963 | Full Details | Law(s): Equal Pay Act

It would give the Secretary of Labor vast new powers over private industry with authority to investigate complaints, conduct hearings, issue orders, regulations and interpretation, and initiate legal actions to enforce complaints. Moreover, it would project Government into the job evaluation process—a prerogative traditionally reserved to management.

-
Chamber of Commerce quoted in the Wall Street Journal.
08/10/1962 | Full Details | Law(s): Equal Pay Act

Evidence

Resources

University of California-Berkeley Labor Center carries out research on labor and workplace-related issues.

National Committee on Pay Equity is a coalition working to eliminate sex- and race-based wage discrimination and to achieve pay equity.

National Women’s Law Center

is a prominent think tank and legal advocacy organization.

Institute for Women’s Policy Research is a prominent think tank that is largely focused on American women's issues. This covers everything from pay equity to welfare reform to domestic violence.