WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the inaptly-named Paycheck Fairness Act by a vote of 217-210. The bill now heads to the Senate.
The Paycheck Fairness Act’s stated goal is to address workplace discrimination and the so-called gender wage gap. However, it does not actually do anything to meet this goal.
While Independent Women’s Forum (IWF) recognizes that instances of workplace discrimination sadly still do occur, the Equal Pay Act of 1963 and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act already make workplace and paycheck discrimination illegal and provide legal remedies for those who have been hurt.
This bill expands the damages employers could face in discrimination lawsuits, requires employees to opt-out of class action lawsuits, and requires employers to demonstrate a “business necessity” for pay disparities that may, in fact, be the result of personal choices. As a result, the law will have the unintended consequence of limiting workplace flexibility and employment opportunities for all workers.
Andi Bottner, senior adviser to Independent Women’s Forum and former Acting Director of the U.S. Department of Justice Office on Violence Against Women (OVW), said: “Of course equally qualified women and men who perform the same job should be paid the same amount, and federal law rightly prohibits pay discrimination. The so-called Paycheck Fairness Act will not further advance this goal. Rather, it will help line the pockets of America’s trial lawyers at the expense of workers.The Paycheck Fairness Act isn’t fair, and once again we see the left trying to fool the American public with deceptively-titled legislation.”
Independent Women’s Forum is dedicated to developing and advancing policies that aren’t just well intended, but actually enhance people’s freedom, choices, and opportunities.