Saturday, January 10, 2009

Yey, Us!!!

Sometimes activism actually pays off. After hearing from thousands of constituents, the US House of Representatives did the right thing and passed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and the Paycheck Fairness Act. But we're not done yet. The Senate still has to pass it and the President has to sign it. You can urge your senators to pass this bill here.

If you're not familiar with her story and what the Fair Pay Act is about, here's Lilly herself telling her story.

The tragedy is that the Supreme Court ruled that, according to the law, she didn't file her claim soon enough. She was supposed to have filed her claim within 180 days after she got her first unequal paycheck. BEFORE she even knew she was getting unequal pay. Yeah. Makes absolutely no sense. So clearly we need to change the law to work for us and not against us.

It also occurs to me that while these laws are desperately needed measures, it's not the only way we'll end unequal pay. Employers often justify this unequal treatment by claiming that women are less of a sure investment as they are more likely to put in less time or leave their jobs to care for their families. The cold hard fact is that they are more likely to do those things because corporate America hasn't quite figured out how to accommodate the needs of working families. If employers embraced flexible work policies to allow either parent to take their kids to the doctor, stay home with sick children, go to parent-teacher conferences, etc., perhaps they'd have a better chance of retaining valuable employees.

1 comment:

PunditMom said...

Keeping my fingers crossed that the Senate will come though with the vote this week!