We Can’t Litigate Ourselves To Equity: The Limitations Of Pay Equity Lawsuits

  • Transparency: a behind-the-scenes look at my day-to-day.
  • Inclusion: bringing others along on the journey.

The Efficacy Of Pay Equity Lawsuits

Question:

Answer:

If we want to achieve equity for all, then we need to treat the disease. We need to create a system that is equitable by default.

The Limitations Of Pay Equity Lawsuits

  • A wage discrepancy between employees of opposite genders
  • The employees of different genders performed equal work of equal effort
  • The employees shared similar work arrangements

Attributes Of A True Pay Equity Law

  1. Companies over a certain size (100 or more employees is a reasonable threshold) must earn an equal pay certification by proving they pay all employees the same amount for work of similar value. This framework shifts the burden of proof from employee to employer.
  2. Federal regulators must hold companies accountable to pay equity by issuing penalties for non-compliance.
  3. To obtain a pay equity certification, companies must apply the intersectional lens to data: gender PLUS race/ethnicity PLUS age. (Side note: Google’s 2021 diversity report takes an intersectional approach to data disaggregation, however, it doesn’t provide data on employee pay.)

Pay Equity Lawsuits Indicate Broken Workplaces

We must restrain from confusing progress with equity.

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