(Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, NY) Last week, seven female State Senators called on Senate leadership to consider and pass the New York State Fair Pay Act, an "equal pay for equal work" bill that has repeatedly been passed by the State Assembly, including last month. Attorney and State Senate candidate Andrew Gounardes and several female community leaders from southern Brooklyn gathered in Bay Ridge to demand that the Senate follow the Assembly's example and adopt the Fair Pay Act immediately.
"Somehow, in the year 2012, there are still women across New York who earn less than men do for the same work. It's sad. It's wrong. And it's time for every one of us to stop looking the other way and to start doing something about it," Gounardes said.
Fair pay has been a recurring theme in Gounardes's campaign to unseat State Senator Marty Golden. In 2011, Golden voted against equal pay for equal work, saying simply that it was too costly to adopt. It has since been reintroduced into the Civil Service and Pensions committee, which Senator Golden chairs, but has been stalled there ever since. "If Senator Golden and his buddies in Albany were truly representing their constituents, they would not only have voted for the bill," Gounardes added, "but would be leading the charge to see it pass!"
According to the National Women's Law Center, the average woman working full time in New York State earns 83 cents to every dollar that a man makes for the same job. For Hispanic women, that number drops to a shocking 55 cents.
"Mother’s Day is just around the corner, and you’ll hear a lot of politicians making grand statements about the role of women," Gounardes continued. " Let’s get serious: there are few better ways to show our respect to the millions of women who have sacrificed for their families, careers, and communities than to ensure that they get the fair pay that they’ve earned."
In 1963 and in 2009, the United States Congress passed two bills that made it illegal to discriminate against women by paying them less than men. But loopholes at the state level have prevented fair pay from becoming a reality for many.
Learn more about Andrew's views on fair pay at: www.andrewgounardes.com/women