DeLissio observes Equal Pay Day at Capitol, expresses need for legislation

PHILADELPHIA, April 7 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., stood up against the injustice of gender pay disparity on Equal Pay Day in the Capitol this week.

Tuesday, April 4 was the symbolic day when a woman’s average salary catches up to a man’s average salary from the previous year.

In Pennsylvania, women are paid on average 77 cents for every dollar a man makes, according to Census data.

“It has reached the point in this country, that a woman who graduated from college in 2009 can expect to work three more years than her male counterpart to repay her student loans,” DeLissio said. “That is a shame, and we can do something about it.”

DeLissio told WBCB 1490 AM news this week that she and her colleagues are working hard to advance core pieces of legislation that would set a course toward pay equality in the work place:

  • House Bill 931 -- Would allow employees to inquire about wages and disclose information about wages by prohibiting retaliatory actions against workers who discuss or file a complaint regarding pay inequities.

  • House Bill 830 -- Would increase fines for employers who are convicted of willfully violating law, falsifying records, or interfering with an investigation under this act from the current amount of $50 to $200 per day of violation to an updated amount of not less than $2,500 nor more than $5,000 per day of violation. Secondly, this legislation would increase the time period during which an employee may file a legal action from two years from the date of the violation to three years from the date of the violation.

The elected officials were joined by the following speakers:

  • Dot McLean, president, American Association of University Women, Pennsylvania

  • Suzanne Almeida, executive director, League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania

  • Terry L. Fromson, managing attorney, Women’s Law Project

  • Susan Vladika, president, Business and Professional Women, Pennsylvania

  • Melissa Robbins, Philadelphia NOW

  • Maggie Groff, Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania.