Let’s Talk About Sex … and Salary History


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How often do we think about sex? When it comes to hiring and pay, perhaps we should more often.salary history

For 54 years, the Federal Equal Pay Act of 1963 has prohibited employers from discrimination in pay based on sex. Despite more than half a century, statistics continue to show that women receive approximately 80 cents for every dollar earned by men (see e.g. The Simple Truth about the Gender Pay Gap, American Association of University Women). Why is that? And what is to be done?

Let’s first look at the law. Under the Equal Pay Act, an employee must pay a woman the same wages as a man for the same work, unless the pay disparity is due to: 1) a seniority system; 2) a merit based system; 3) a system that sets an employee’s pay based on the quality or quantity of production; or 4) a difference based on a factor “other than sex.”  Are these exceptions so broad that they swallow the rule entirely?

Because of these statistics and the perceived lack of protection under the current law, state and local legislatures are currently taking a harder look at these pay disparities and attempting to find ways to close the gap.

Read from Compensation – HR Daily Advisor