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Equal Pay Day Marked By House Hearing and Rally

The eleventh annual Equal Pay Day was marked by the first congressional hearing in ten years on the need to eliminate the pay gap between women and men. The House Education and Labor Committee held the hearing to consider the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would strengthen the Equal Pay Act of 1963.

Representative Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), who is sponsoring the bill in the House, testified yesterday, saying, “The issue of pay equity… is about ensuring that women who work hard and productively and carry a full range of family responsibilities are paid at a rate they are entitled. I often say pay equity is not a women’s issue. It is a family issue.”

A rally on Capitol Hill followed the hearing. Senators Tom Harkin (D-IA) and Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY) and Representatives Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) and DeLauro spoke at the rally, emphasizing the economic stress that the wage gap imposes.

A new study released on Monday by the American Association of University Women Educational Foundation shows that a woman who works full time earns 80 percent of her male counterpart’s salary one year after college graduation, and earns 69 percent ten years after graduation.

LEARN MORE Read testimony by Catherine Hill, Ph.D., the director of research at the American Association of University Women, before the US House Committee on Education and Labor on equal pay for women (PDF)

Sources:

AAUW 4/23/07; Women Work release 4/24/07; FMF; Paycheck Fairness Act; Rep. Rosa DeLauro release 4/24/07