Thursday, January 29, 2009

Breaking News!

Today, president Obama signed into law the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act -- which overturns a 2007 Supreme Court decision that put a strict statute of limitations on the filing of lawsuits over pay inequities. Prior to today, these lawsuits had to be filed within 180 days of the first time the pay discrepancy took place. In Ledbetter's case, she was unaware that she was being paid less than a male counterpart for nearly 20 years! Now, with each paycheck that is unjust, the statute of limitations is extended 180 days further, meaning that women like Lilly, who don't realize they're not being paid an equal wage, can sue when it comes to their attention -- regardless of how long it's been happening.

What a great victory for working women!! To read about the bill, please click see the Associated Press article or the CNN article.

And... here's a peek into Obama's statement's as he signed the bill:

"...While this bill bears her name, Lilly knows this story isn't just about her. It's the story of women across this country still earning just 78 cents for every dollar men earn - women of color, even less - which means that today, in the year 2009, countless women are still losing thousands of dollars in salary, income and retirement savings over the course of a lifetime.

But equal pay is by no means just a women's issue - it's a family issue. It's about parents who find themselves with less money for tuition or child care; couples who wind up with less to retire on; households where, when one breadwinner is paid less than she deserves, that's the difference between affording the mortgage - or not; between keeping the heat on, or paying the doctor's bills - or not. And in this economy, when so many folks are already working harder for less and struggling to get by, the last thing they can afford is losing part of each month's paycheck to simple discrimination.

So in signing this bill today, I intend to send a clear message: That making our economy work means making sure it works for everyone. That there are no second class citizens in our workplaces, and that it's not just unfair and illegal - but bad for business - to pay someone less because of their gender, age, race, ethnicity, religion or disability. And that justice isn't about some abstract legal theory, or footnote in a casebook - it's about how our laws affect the daily realities of people's lives: their ability to make a living and care for their families and achieve their goals."

1 comment:

Tracher said...

This is great to know. I had contacted Sen. Saxby Chambliss about voting for this and he said he was going to vote against it. Our own State Senator doesn't have this issue at heart for women!