Today marks the 50th anniversary of the signing of the federal Equal Pay Act -- an occasion that both demonstrates the progress we have made to achieve pay equity and highlights the work that remains to be done to fulfill this mission. Today in New York, women earn 84 percent of what their male counterparts earn. Over a lifetime, they will earn $500,000 less than men. In 2013, this is unacceptable, and one of the main points the Women's Equality Act works to overcome. It would require employers to base their pay decisions on qualifications and not gender. The legislation also protects an employee's right to share wage information with other employees without being retaliated against and increase damages to successful plaintiffs in pay equity discrimination cases. It is clear that 50 years after the Equal Pay Act, our work to fully shatter this glass ceiling is far from done. New York has always led the way, and the Women's Equality Act will once again make the Empire State the leader on women's rights in the workplace.