San Diego Feminist Book Group discussion

House Passes Paycheck Fairness Act, but Bush Wants To Veto It!

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message 1: by Keely (new)

Keely Hyslop | 18 comments Mod
The federal government has finally passed a bill banning pay inequity on the basis of sexual discrimination. Apparently there is some existing legislation on this point, but the new bill would stop giving companies the right to punish employees for speaking with each other about their wage rate and would allow women to sue for wage equality putting the onus on the company to prove that pay inequity was the result of greater merit, performance, or experience.

Here's some info.:

Unfortunately Bush is planning to veto the new bill.

The veto can be over-ridden in the House if 36 representatives change their vote to yes.

This is a historic moment in gender equality legislation. I think we should start a letter writing and phone call campaign to try to help get this passed.

Whose with me? Any one ever done anything similar?

message 2: by Keely (new)

Keely Hyslop | 18 comments Mod
Did a bit of digging on this issue. You can find information on how different members of the house voted here:

I didn't want to make this a partisan issue, but apparently every democratic representative voted to approve the bill. Out of the 192 republican candidates who voted only 14 voted in favor of Paycheck Fairness.

I think we should start the letter writing campaign by writing to Elaine Chao, the U.S. Secretary of Labor. She's married to U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitchell McConnell of Kentucky, the Paycheck Fairness Bill's most vocal opponent. She's an interesting historical figure in her own right. She's the first Asian American woman to hold a cabinet position, she served as director of the Peace Corps for a year, and has enacted historic wage protection regulations for immigrant workers. She is also, frustratingly enough, on record as stating that pay inequity no longer exists. Read more about her here:

This is her contact information:

Elaine Chao
Department of Labor
200 Constitution Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20210
(202) 219-5000

If anyone wants to take this on, but isn't sure what to write let me know. We can brainstorm together. Not sure how I feel about those form letters. I suspect they are less effective than a personalized letter.

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