CHICAGO – As April 4 marks “Equal Pay Day” and the month of April marks “Equal Pay Month,” state Rep. Juliana Stratton is highlighting her efforts to better enforce and promote pay equality in the workplace for women, especially for women of color.
“Even in 2017, women earn around 80 cents for every dollar men earn, and black women earn 65 cents for every dollar white men earn,” Stratton said. “As a professional woman, and the mother of three daughters, two of which are in the workforce, I won’t sit back and let this injustice continue. We need to rewrite the rules so no woman is ever earning less for doing the same job.”
Stratton is sponsoring House Bill 2462, which would require employers to pay women the same as equally qualified men in the same jobs. The legislation would also prohibit companies from stopping women from speaking openly about how much they earn within a company, or use a woman’s past earnings history to unfairly lower what they would have paid them. Stratton’s bill comes amidst “Pay Equity Day,” which symbolizes how many days into 2017 is required for a woman to earn what her male counterpart made in 2016.
“Even as women make gains in the professional workforce, there are still barriers to our equal status with men,” Stratton said. “So until I see women, especially black women, making just as much as men do, I’m going to continue to fight for equal pay for equal work.”