Equal Pay Act

Equal Pay Act

The Equal Pay Act amended the Fair Labor Standards Act (1938) with the intent to end the disparity in wages between men and women. The amendment argued that sex discrimination depressed wages and living standards for employees, hindered full employment, caused labor disputes that in turn affected commerce, and violated free and fair competition. The crucial part of the amendment: “No employer having employees subject to any provisions of this section shall discriminate, within any establishment in which such employees are employed, between employees on the basis of sex by paying wages to employees in such establishment at a rate less than the rate at which he pays wages to employees of the opposite sex in such establishment for equal work on jobs[,] the performance of which requires equal skill, effort, and responsibility, and which are performed under similar working conditions, except where such payment is made pursuant to (i) a seniority system; (ii) a merit system; (iii) a system which measures earnings by quantity or quality of production; or (iv) a differential based on any other factor other than sex…”

Commentary

US Capitol building

Darrel Issa’s Government Handover

January 05, 2011

Cry Wolf Quotes

If my company were compelled to raise all of our female rates in this plant to the male rates in question, it would seriously jeopardize the competitive position of this plant with its competitors located in other states employing all females in these jobs.

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Jerry N. Markham, director of industrial relations, Thatcher Glass Manufacturing Company, Testimony, House Hearing.
03/27/1963 | Full Details | Law(s): Equal Pay Act

I have yet to see a woman in a manufacturing establishment who has been able to rise to the top in a manufacturing job….It is because men in general, I think, like to be supervised by men rather than women in factory jobs.

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

The retailing industry has long recognized the importance of its women employees. It is natural in this business employing such a preponderance of female employees, that their importance be recognized in many ways—not the least of which is their right to earn coequal salaries with men in the same positions. In fact, there are many jobs in retailing which are better adapted to women employees—and experience has shown are much better performed by them than men. Thus, a policy of paying the rate for the job, without regard to the sex of the worker, is generally reflected in women’s pay checks in the retailing industry.

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Statement of the American Retail Federation, at the Senate Committee on Labor and Public Welfare (Subcommittee on Labor).
08/01/1962 | 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.

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