Michigan’s legislature is back in session today, and rather than focusing on limiting LGBT rights or rigging our elections it’s about time they focus on something important: like equal pay for equal work. Next month, 50 years will have passed since John F. Kennedy signed the landmark Equal Pay Act, but women still earn 77 cents for every dollar a man makes.
That’s not fair and it needs to change. Today at noon, Michigan lawmakers, women and men from across Michigan will join together for Equal Pay Day, a national day of recognition, to call for action to end the gap in pay between men and women in the workplace.
While recent statistics from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics show that American women earn 77 cents for every dollar their male counterparts are paid, the sad reality is that most women don’t realize they’re being paid less. Therefore a coalition of women’s rights groups are coming together to call on legislators to support measures that would:
- Strengthen the Elliot Larson Act to include equal pay for equal work, regardless of gender;
- Increase penalties for wage discrimination based on gender;
- Establish pay equity committee;
- Allow women, and other employees, to compare their wages to know if they are being equally paid.
Research shows that it will take until 2056 for women and men’s earnings to reach equal pay if the wage gap continues to close at the same pace it has for the last fifty years. Tell your lawmakers you don’t want to wait that long.