America’s Mothers Lost Today When Opponents Blocked a Senate Vote on the Paycheck Fairness Act
November 17, 2010
MomsRising Leader Says Fair Pay is Essential for Working Families
By a razor-thin margin, and in a huge disappointment to working families, the United States Senate today failed to muster enough votes to invoke cloture on the Paycheck Fairness Act – legislation that would strengthen the 1963 Equal Pay Act, help close the pay gap, and give women tools to fight pay discrimination in the workplace.
“This is a huge disappointment to America’s working moms and their families,” said MomsRising Executive Director Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner. “The Senate vote sent a chilling message that, no matter how well we do in our jobs, women can still be paid less for the same work. America’s mothers lost today.”
“The Paycheck Fairness Act is sorely needed to update the Equal Pay Act of 1963,” Rowe-Finkbeiner continued. “Right now women are paid 77 cents for every dollar paid to men, and the pay gap has been narrowing by less than half a percent a year. At this rate, the gap won’t close for another 47 years. With more and more families depending on moms’ paychecks, we simply cannot afford to wait. We deserve better and our daughters deserve better. Moms are a powerful force and we’ll keep fighting for fair pay.”
The Paycheck Fairness Act would: deter wage discrimination by strengthening penalties for equal pay violations and by prohibiting retaliation against workers who ask about employers' wage practices or disclose their own wages; empower women to negotiate for equal pay; strengthen federal outreach, education and enforcement efforts; and create stronger incentives for employers to follow the law.
In recent days, tens of thousands of MomsRising members from around the country have emailed and called their Senators to urge them to pass this bill this year. MomsRising members also delivered "clam-o-grams" – clam-shaped cookies bearing messages – to U.S. Senator Scott Brown’s office (R-MA) to let him know: “Massachusetts moms need fair pay like New England clam chowder needs clams.”
MomsRising is an online and on-the-ground grassroots organization that supports family-friendly policies.