Press Releases

Knight Introduces Equal Pay Legislation

Bill Would Improve Workplace Protections and Enforcement

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Washington, D.C., April 4, 2017 | Daniel Outlaw (202-225-1956) | comments
Representative Steve Knight (CA-25) introduced legislation on Tuesday that would reinforce and strengthen equal pay laws and protect employees who seek or share wage information.

The Workplace Advancement Act would empower individuals to negotiate their salaries more effectively by preventing retaliation against employees who inquire about or discuss workplace salaries. It would also reaffirm Congressional commitment to the the Equal Pay Act and Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, existing laws that ban gender discrimination. 

“Today is Equal Pay Day, which serves as a reminder that we still have a long way to go in ensuring equality in the workplace,” said Knight. “While we have made some progress on this issue, we must keep striving to increase economic opportunities and address the barriers that many women still face today.” 

Knight’s legislation would not impose new federal regulations or compel employers to disclose salary information. Instead it would amend Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 to include a prohibition on employers retaliating against employees who seek comparative wage information. 

Tuesday’s introduction builds on Knight’s previous work to increase opportunities for women. Last month he introduced the Women’s Business Centers Improvements Act of 2017, a bipartisan measure that would boost a program that increases opportunities for female entrepreneurs. 
“Equal pay for equal work is a basic American value that is in everyone’s interest, and we must improve and enforce our laws preventing workplace discrimination,” continued Knight. “This bill would help ensure women are able to earn the salaries they deserve.”

The Workplace Advancement Act is cosponsored by Representatives Lynn Jenkins (KS-2) and David Young (IA-3) and is a companion to legislation introduced by Senator Deb Fischer of Nebraska that garnered widespread support in the previous Congress.  
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