Yahoo, eBay among Newest Companies to Sign White House Equal Pay PledgeDecember 07, 2016
AAUW commends the 44 additional companies that signed the White House Equal Pay Pledge on December 7. This diverse group of businesses including AT&T, eBay, the Estee Lauder Companies, Yahoo, and Zillow Group joins a list of more than 100 top companies such as Amazon, L’Oréal USA, and PepsiCo. President Barack Obama announced the creation of the pledge in June 2016, and initially the group featured 28 of America’s leading businesses expressing their commitment to closing the gender pay gap.
“Equal pay is an issue whose time has come,” said AAUW Vice President of Government Relations and Advocacy Lisa Maatz. “In 2016, the country furthered innovative approaches to closing the gender pay gap at the federal, state, and local levels, including a wave of pay equity legislation in red, blue, and purple states. We also continued to see this type of positive action by the business community, as well as smart use of executive actions by President Obama.”
The incoming Donald Trump administration should keep this in mind as they consider their view on executive branch reforms such as the Employer Information Report (EEO-1) data collection effort and the new overtime rule. “The will for equal pay is at a high tide, which the new administration and Congress ignore at their peril,” noted Maatz. “Any rollback of individual elements of the equal pay agenda will do real harm to people’s paychecks. But, even if Trump and Congress fail to see the light, state legislatures and grassroots advocates will keep equal pay moving.’
Anheuser-Busch made news in August when they decided to sign the pledge after urging from the public (and AAUW members) to do so. As part of the pledge, companies promise to conduct an annual company-wide gender pay audit, review hiring and promotion procedures, and address problems of implicit gender bias in hiring and pay structures. These are all best practices backed by AAUW research and advocacy.
“The pay gap is stubborn and pernicious,” said Maatz. “By committing to getting their own houses in order, these businesses are setting an example and showing that pay discrimination must not be tolerated. Their participation shows more than support of basic fairness. Smart businesses know that equal pay for all workers is not just good legal practice, it’s downright good business.”
AAUW thanks the Obama administration for bringing equal pay into the spotlight and using executive authority strategically to push the issue forward.
In the absence of federal action, some states are taking steps to close the pay gap at the local level.
States coordinated a blitz of equal pay legislation in 2016.
Learn about the pay gap in the United States, how it affects all women, and what you can do to close it.