Congressman Dave Loebsack, a member of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, released the following statement on Equal Pay Day, which is intended to bring attention to the inequality in pay between genders and marks how much longer a woman must work into 2012 to earn as much as a man earned in 2011. According to Census data, in 2011 women earned just 77 percent of what was earned by their male counterparts.
"Equal Pay is not a women's issue or a man's issue, it is a family issue. In today's tough economy, Iowa's working families are pinching every penny just to make ends meet and in most families with children, both parents work. It is now more critical than ever that our mothers, daughter, sisters and aunts receive the same pay for the same work as their male counterparts so our families do not have to sacrifice basic necessities.
"In the 49 years since the Equal Pay Act was first signed into law, substantial steps have been made in addressing the wage gap between men and women, but more must be done. I was proud to help introduce the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which restored a women's right to challenge unfair pay. This legislation was signed into law by the President in January 2009. I am also a cosponsor of the Paycheck Fairness Act that would not only give a much needed update to the Equal Pay Act, but it would also help working families by eliminating the wage gap.
"Standing up for equal pay benefits everyone -- men, women and children. It also strengthens families across Iowa. It is time we pass the Paycheck Fairness Act and eliminate the wage gap."