Cummings, Senate and House Democrats Introduce Paycheck Fairness Act on Equal Pay Day

April 4, 2017
Press Release

Washington, D.C. (Apr. 4, 2017)—Today, Congressman Elijah E. Cummings (D-MD) joined Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) to introduce the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would strengthen the Equal Pay Act of 1963 by allowing women to challenge pay discrimination and hold employers accountable.  U.S. Senator Patty Murray introduced the companion legislation in the Senate.

“I am proud to join Congresswoman DeLauro and Senator Murray to introduce this bill, which would help us finally close the wage gap,” Cummings said. “We should not be a country that allows employers to pay women less than their male co-workers for doing the same job.” 

Equal Pay Day symbolizes the date when women’s wages finally catch up to what men were paid in the previous year. Despite making up half the workforce, more than five decades after the passage of the Equal Pay Act of 1963, American women still make only 80 cents, on average, for every dollar earned by a man. The gap is even wider for women of color, with African American women making 63 cents on the dollar, and Hispanic women making only 54 cents, on average, compared with white men.

The Paycheck Fairness Act would strengthen and close loopholes in the Equal Pay Act of 1963 by holding employers accountable for discriminatory practices, ending the practice of pay secrecy, easing workers’ ability to individually or jointly challenge pay discrimination, and strengthening the available remedies for wronged employees.