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Rep. McKinney Supports Strengthening the Equal Pay Act

Prohibit Wage Discrimination Against Women

June 10, 1998

"Women head over 50% of American households. Breaking through the glass ceiling is essential in providing women with the means to offer their families a higher quality of life."

(Washington) - Thirty-five years ago today President Kennedy signed the Equal Pay Act and called it the first step in addressing "the unconscionable practice of paying female employees less wages than male employees for the same job." Today President Clinton commemorated the 35th anniversary of the law and Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney (D-Ga.) announced her support of H.R. 2023, the Paycheck Fairness Act, sponsored by Rosa DeLauro saying, "The wage gap is one of the most pressing issues facing families, the economy and women workers in particular. Women head over 50% of American households. Equity in pay and breaking through the glass ceiling is essential in providing women with the means to offer their families a higher quality of life."

In 1958 women earned 61 cents for each dollar earned by a man. The earning power of women relative to men had unfortunately not improved significantly since 1963. In 1995, working women still earned on average only 71% of the wages earned by men, according to the Census Bureau. "Over the last five years, the wage gap has been at a virtual status quo. According to the White House, women still earn only 71 cents for each dollar a man earns, on average. In Georgia women earn only 72% of what men earn. Statistically, it would take until the year 2038 before men and women reach parity in pay," said McKinney.

Unfair pay and the glass ceiling affects women whether they are business executives or construction workers, celebrities or secretaries. This is not a womenís issue - itís a family issue. Women are often providing a significant part of their familyís income, and in many cases they are the sole wage-earner. I join my colleagues today in strong support of the Paycheck Fairness Act and will work to help close the pay equity gap. Working women and their families in Georgia and across the country deserve equal pay for equal work," concluded McKinney.

Rep. McKinney recently held a townhall meeting, Breaking Through the Glass Ceiling: Empowering Americaís Women, in the Fourth District of Georgia to address this very issue.

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