New Jersey Legislature passes gender pay gap bill New Jersey Legislature passes gender pay gap bill

New Jersey Legislature passes gender pay gap bill
05 Apr 2018

The New Jersey Legislature has overwhelmingly passed a bill aimed at closing the wage gap between men and women in the state.

According to Law360, the bill will prohibit employers from paying women less than men for substantially similar work, enable workers to earn threefold damages if this situation takes place and allow employees to receive up to six years of back pay.

Assemblywoman Joann Downey said: "It's way past due, and I applaud everyone here for standing up and doing the right thing here in New Jersey, as a progressive and immensely fair and reasonable state."

The bill will make it unlawful for employers to discriminate against workers who are members of a protected class by paying them less compensation, including benefits, than employees who are not in that class for “substantially similar work, when viewed as a composite of skill, effort and responsibility”.

There are exemptions if differences are based on a seniority or merit system, or legitimate factors such as training, education and experience.

The bill was approved by a 74-2 vote. It now heads to Democratic governor Phil Murphy, who is expected to give it his approval.

 Emma Woollacott

Emma Woollacott is a freelance business journalist. Her work has appeared in a wide range of publications, including the Guardian, the Times, Forbes and the BBC.

The New Jersey Legislature has overwhelmingly passed a bill aimed at closing the wage gap between men and women in the state.

According to Law360, the bill will prohibit employers from paying women less than men for substantially similar work, enable workers to earn threefold damages if this situation takes place and allow employees to receive up to six years of back pay.

Assemblywoman Joann Downey said: "It's way past due, and I applaud everyone here for standing up and doing the right thing here in New Jersey, as a progressive and immensely fair and reasonable state."

The bill will make it unlawful for employers to discriminate against workers who are members of a protected class by paying them less compensation, including benefits, than employees who are not in that class for “substantially similar work, when viewed as a composite of skill, effort and responsibility”.

There are exemptions if differences are based on a seniority or merit system, or legitimate factors such as training, education and experience.

The bill was approved by a 74-2 vote. It now heads to Democratic governor Phil Murphy, who is expected to give it his approval.

 Emma Woollacott

Emma Woollacott is a freelance business journalist. Her work has appeared in a wide range of publications, including the Guardian, the Times, Forbes and the BBC.

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