LILLY LEDBETTER FAIR PAY ACT AND PAYCHECK FAIRNESS ACT -- (House of Representatives - January 08, 2009)
Mr. BACA. Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of two critical bills: the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and the Paycheck Fairness Act.
More than 40 years have passed since the passage of the Equal Pay Act. Unfortunately, women still earn less than men for the same work, and that is unfair. Women earn 78 cents for every dollar earned by men. The pay gap is even more severe amongst minority women. African American women earn 69 cents. Hispanic women earn just 56 cents on the dollar.
The story of Lilly Ledbetter is a case in point of the barriers faced by women today. It's time for a change. Simply because of her gender, Ms. Ledbetter was paid 20 percent less for performing the same job that her male colleagues performed. It's unfair.
The gap doesn't just affect women. It affects the Nation's economy. Women represent 41 percent of the total heads of households and sole income earners in this country. We cannot afford to weaken the ability of our breadwinners to pay for the basics, like groceries, child care and health care, especially as we face a growing economic recession.
I urge us to support this legislation.