Pelosi Statement on Passage of Ledbetter Fair Pay Act

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi released the following statement today upon the passage of H.R. 2831, the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2007:

‘The New Direction Congress achieved a crucial victory today for justice and equality with the passage of the Ledbetter Fair Pay Act.  This legislation corrects a recent Supreme Court decision that severely restricted the right of workers to have their day in court when their employers have engaged in pay discrimination.

‘The Supreme Court’s decision ignored the reality that most workers do not discuss their paychecks with their colleagues, which makes it extremely difficult for employees to know if they have been the victim of pay discrimination.  By rectifying the Court’s decision, the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act restores balance in the law and allows victims of wage discrimination to seek justice in the courts.

‘Lilly Ledbetter was a victim of gender discrimination in the workplace and in her paycheck.  Women, indeed all workers subject to pay discrimination, need all resources available, especially the protections of civil rights law, to ensure their right to fair pay.

‘Today, women earn only 77 cents for every dollar earned by men.  And women earn less than men in nearly every occupation.  The Ledbetter Fair Pay Act restores the ability of women and all workers who are protected by anti-discrimination and civil rights laws access to our judicial system to vindicate their rights when they have been harmed by discrimination.

‘Equal pay for equal work is a fundamental value.  The President should join the House on the side of all American workers in standing for pay equity and against discrimination.’