While Congress isn't likely to give President Clinton the extra $27 million he wants to strengthen equal-pay enforcement, that doesn't mean you should forget about the issue.
His proposal alone will prompt more women to file suit. Also, the AFL-CIO has begun encouraging its female members to report suspicions of pay inequities to the EEOC. In addition to suing on behalf of employees, the EEOC can conduct pay audits even if it doesn't receive a complaint.
Review your compensation now to make sure it's gender-neutral. Three pieces of advice:
- Tie wages to skill, responsibility, performance and education. If seniority and experience affect pay rates, make sure to apply them on a sex-neutral basis.
- Don't use "head of household" or "principal wage earner" classifications to justify higher pay for men.
- Don't provide different benefits based on gender.