Presidential Candidate Kamala Harris Announces No Nonsense Plan To Close Pay Gap
Her proposal would fine daily profits of companies who could not prove they paid women and men equally.
May 20, 2019 at 5:57 pm
Sen. Kamala Harris unveiled a plan to close the gender pay gap, moving men and women towards earning the same amount for equal work. Harris's proposal requires companies to acquire an equal pay certification by giving payroll information to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
"What I am proposing is we shift the burden: It should not be on working woman to prove it, it should instead be on large corporation[s] to prove they're paying people for equal work equally," Harris said in an interview with CNN. "It's that simple, it's literally that simple. And this, then, is not only about fairness and equality, it's about transparency. Show us what you got. That's it."
Current rules — like the Lilly Ledbetter Act signed into law by President Obama — require women employees to report pay discrimination and risk retaliation by coming forward and carrying the burden of suing for relief.
In addition to transparency, Harris' plan — similar to Iceland — details for those companies who gained certification to publicize it on the homepage of their websites. Those companies unable to prove they pay women and men equally would be fined one percent of their daily profits for every percentage difference in salaries.
According to the National Partnership for Women & Families, women with full-time year-round jobs make $.80 to every dollar of their male counterparts. The gap becomes even worse when calculated for black women; who make just $.61 for every dollar of a white man. The gap averages out to more than $1 million in lost wages in the career of a black woman.
Sen. Harris says if Congress does not act on the pay gap, if she is elected, she will attempt to solve the problem with executive action.