SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – State Rep. Kathy Willis, D-Northlake, is backing efforts to help ensure women are paid equally as men that are doing the same job by sponsoring legislation that would prohibit employers from using an unfair practice that locks women and minorities into a lifetime of lower pay.
“By prohibiting businesses from asking about an individuals’ previous pay, we can help reduce the role that the wage-gap between men and women has played historically,” Willis said. “As a strong believer in equal pay for equal work, I recognize that this proposal will not solve all the injustices women face in the workplace, however it’s a big step in the right direction.”
Willis is sponsoring House Bill 834, which amends Illinois’ Equal Pay Act to bar employers from requiring jobs applicants to submit a salary history. Given historic pay inequality, Willis believes the measure will prevent low salaries from following women and minorities from job to job. Former Gov. Bruce Rauner vetoed identical legislation last summer, and Willis is hopeful that it can now become law.
“Ending wage discrimination shouldn’t be a partisan issue,” Willis said. “The legislation has already received bipartisan support, and I am hopeful that working with a new administration we can move Illinois closer to guaranteeing equal pay for equal work.”