SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – House Bill 834, which was co-sponsored and strongly supported by state Rep. Terra Costa Howard, D-Glen Ellyn, passed out of the Illinois House last week with overwhelming bipartisan support – bringing Illinois women one step closer to pay equity by banning salary history from job applications.
“When prospective employers ask about salary history, that virtually guarantees that a woman who is paid less than male colleagues in her first job will continue to be paid less throughout her career,” said Costa Howard, who is an attorney and small business owner. “That’s just wrong. When men and women do the same job, they should be paid the same wage. So I’m proud to sponsor this legislation, which provides a simple, commonsense fix to help make sure women in every workplace get paid fairly.”
HB 834 amends Illinois’ Equal Pay Act by prohibiting employers from screening job applicants based on their salary history or requiring applicants to reveal their salary history as a condition of employment. In addition, prospective employers will not be allowed to ask current or former employers about the applicant’s salary history.
“Since a gender wage gap still exists, House Bill 834 will strengthen the Illinois Equal Pay Act by making it a violation for employers to ask job applicants about their prior salary or to confirm it with their employer, in order to stop perpetuating unequal pay,” said Melissa Josephs, Director of Equal Opportunity Policy with Women Employed. “Instead, employers should hire employees based on their skills and experience, and pay them based on their budget and the going rate for the job.”
“It’s time to end the discriminatory practices that can lock women into career-long wage disparities,” Costa Howard added. “As the vote in the House showed, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle support wage fairness. I hope the state Senate will take quick action to approve House Bill 834, and I look forward to the day when Governor Pritzker signs this important bill into law and brings greater wage fairness to Illinois’ working women.”
For more information, please contact Rep. Costa Howard’s constituent service office at RepTCH48@gmail.com or 630-812-9292.