Equal Pay Act

Topics: Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Gender, Woman Pages: 3 (869 words) Published: February 4, 2007
Equal Pay Act

There are many laws and regulations that govern how the American work force is compensated. In most cases, the laws are set forth to protect the employee against unfair compensation practices. Many of the issues Americans face today are the same issues that existed many years ago. Issues involving labor relations, unions, and men versus women are many of the same issues we face today involving compensation. The Equal Pay Act is on of great interest to me as it covers compensation and how it relates to men and women. This act is one that many people rely heavily upon in today's workforce. Before explaining exactly what the Equal Pay Act is, one must understand its true meaning in today's world. As explained by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, "The Equal Pay Act requires that men and women be given equal pay for equal work in the same establishment. The jobs need not be identical, but they must be substantially equal. It is job content, not job titles, that determines whether jobs are substantially equal" (Equal Pay…, 2006). The last sentence is particularly interesting; It is job content, not job titles… This is a way of identifying and capturing that a person is compensated not by title, rather what they do. The Act evolved from the fact that the male gender typically was paid much higher for the same job than a female. The Equal Pay Act was introduced and enforced in 1963 by the EEOC. To take it a bit further, employers cannot pay men and women differently if job is basically the same skill, repsonsibility, and effort. Skill is defined by what skills it takes to perform the particular job. This is not to be confused with what skills a person possesses. Two people may possess many of the same skills yet one of them holds a much larger array of skills. That person is not to be compensated more to perform the same job. Effort involves what is physically or mentally required for a person to complete the job. If one...

References: Equal Pay and Compensation Discrimination (2006). The U.S. Equal Employment
Opportunity Commission. Retrieved November 19th, 2006 from
http://www.eeoc.gov/types/epa.html

Women in Red! Equal Pay Day is April 15th (2003). National Organization for Woman.
Retrieved November 19th, 2006 from
http://www.now.org/issues/economic/alerts/04-04-03.html
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