June 20th, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down a 5-4 decision in the Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., v. Betty Dukes case, denying Wal-Mart's 1.6 million female employees the opportunity to sue the retail giant collectively for gender-based employment discrimination. Hadassah co-signed an amicus brief in the case with the National Women's Law Center, American Civil Liberties Union and others in support the women's class action.
While the court agreed unanimously on a few aspects of the case, there was sharp disagreement over whether the female employees had enough in common to constitute a unified class. The majority's opinion is a major departure from current class action law, severely restricting employees' ability to fight discrimination and allowing corporations to hide behind their written fair employment practices, despite actions to the contrary.
Hadassah Members, Associates and supporters joined rallies across the country on June 21st to show solidarity with the women of Wal-Mart.
This decision shows, now more than ever, the need for legislation to protect all women from pay discrimination. This month marked nearly 50 years since the passage of the Equal Pay Act, and yet women still only make 77 cents for ever dollar a man earns. Hadassah, a longtime member of the National Committee on Pay Equity, strongly supports the adoption and strict enforcement of equal pay laws to reduce the wage gap and ensure better economic security for women.
Take this opportunity to tell Congress to eliminate the wage gap! Urge your legislators to co-sponsor and support the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would close loopholes in the Equal Pay Act and bar retaliation against employees who disclose their wages to coworkers.Date: 6/21/2011