Speaking of Women's Rights: The Wage Gap is a Myth! Or is it?

Friday, January 29, 2016

The Wage Gap is a Myth!
Or is it?

By Janet Chung

We hear it all the time: “The wage gap is a myth!” Or, “We have all the laws we need to eliminate pay inequality.”

But even in jobs predominantly held by women—such as administrators, registered nurses, and teachers—men take home more pay every single week. So, despite what the critics say, the wage gap persists.

And many employers still punish workers for discussing their pay with co-workers, depriving them of the information that could help all workers make sure they are being paid fairly. Legal Voice, our allied organizations, and our legislative champions are not willing to accept that status quo, so we are advocating for an equal pay bill currently before the Washington Legislature.

We are excited that HB 1646 passed out of the House Labor & Workplace Standards Committee last week, and it is now ready to be scheduled for a vote by the full House. But we need your help to ensure this important bill also receives a hearing in the Senate Commerce & Labor Committee.

Please urge Chair Michael Baumgartner and other members of the Senate Commerce & Labor Committee to schedule SB 6442 for a public hearing. Here's how:

• Call the legislative hotline at 800-562-6000 between 8:00 am and 8:00 pm Monday through Friday. Your message will be passed along to your Senator.

• Email Senator Baumgartner or the other members of the Committee. Use this link to email them all at once (sample message included). Having trouble? Copy and paste this list into the “To” field of your email, and use the sample message below:

Michael.Baumgartner@leg.wa.gov; John.Braun@leg.wa.gov; Bob.Hasegawa@leg.wa.gov; Steve.Conway@leg.wa.gov; Karen.Keiser@leg.wa.gov; Curtis.King@leg.wa.gov; Judy.Warnick@leg.wa.gov

Sample message: Please hear and pass SB 5630 before next week’s cutoff. Join me in standing up for Washington’s working women and families by updating our equal pay laws. We all deserve paycheck transparency and equal employment opportunities.

Together, we can make sure that someday, the wage gap really IS a myth. Thank you for your help and support!