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Tuesday, February 19 , 2019, 9:28 am | Fair 52º

 
 
 
 

Capps Speaks on House Floor in Honor of Equal Pay Day

On Tuesday, Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara, spoke on the House floor to mark Equal Pay Day, highlighting the need for Congress to do more to close the wage gap that exists between men and women.

Equal Pay Day — held on April 14 — symbolizes how long it takes for women’s wages to finally catch up to what men were paid in the previous year. In California, according to the National Women’s Law Center, women make 84 cents for every dollar men make. Nationwide, women earn only 78 cents for every dollar earned by men.

Capps is an original co-sponsor of the Paycheck Fairness Act, which strengthens and closes loopholes in the Equal Pay Act of 1963.

Among its many provisions, the Paycheck Fairness Act requires employers to show that pay disparity is truly related to job performance, not gender; strengthens remedies for women experiencing pay discrimination; prohibits employer retaliation for sharing salary information with coworkers; and empowers women in the workplace through a grant program to strengthen salary negotiation and other workplace skills.

Capps’ floor speech can be seen here. The text of her speech is below.

Mr. Speaker, I rise today because across the United States, women continue to earn less than men for an equal days work.

In fact, women on average make 78 cents for every dollar earned by men. For African-American and Latina women, those numbers drop even lower.

Even nurses, who many thought were immune to the pay gap, experience this gender discrepancy — often resulting in men being paid thousands of dollars more a year than women.

And this disparity has very real consequences — a woman’s economic health has a ripple effect on her family and our local economies.

That is why I am proud to be an original cosponsor of the Paycheck Fairness Act. This critical bill would strengthen the 52-year-old Equal Pay Act by closing loopholes and ensuring that women are paid equal wages for equal work.

Today, on Equal Pay Day, I urge House Leadership to bring the Paycheck Fairness Act to the floor for a vote, because we know that when women succeed, America succeeds.

Thank you.

— Chris Meagher is a press secretary for Rep. Lois Capps.

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