President Unveils New Gender Pay Equity Rules

On Friday, President Obama marked the 7th anniversary of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act by announcing new measures to promote gender pay equity.

Under the proposed new rules, companies with 100 or more employees would be required to include pay data on their EEO-1 reports. These already mandatory reports currently include information on employee gender, race, and roles. In a press release, the EEOC reported that the changes would better enable the agency to “assess complaints of discrimination, focus agency investigations, and identify existing pay disparities that may warrant further examination.”

Details on enforcement or penalties were not provided. Under the Administrative Procedure Act, the EEOC will accept written comments on the law from the public until April 1, 2016. A hearing regarding the rule changes will also be scheduled at a later date.

Additionally, President Obama called on Congress to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act. Senate Republicans have blocked the bill several times, arguing that gender discrimination is already illegal under existing laws and that the new act would spur frivolous lawsuits.

Employers should note that this year’s EEO-1 forms remain the same. The proposed changes would not take effect until the September 30, 2017 EEO-1 filing date.

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