Michigan Democrats are pushing several bills aimed at closing the earnings gap between women and men. House Bills 4625-4627 and Senate Bill 417 would broaden anti-discrimination laws to require equal pay for “work of comparable value,” expanding the current standard of equal pay for “equal” work.
The bills call for the establishment of a governor-appointed commission, which would work to define comparable value and create guidelines for employers. The bills also call for a penalty of up to $500 and 90 days in jail for wage discrimination, with fines of up to $50,000 for a third offense.
Nationally, women earn 77 cents on the dollar compared to men. In Michigan, that figure drops to 67 cents on the dollar, according to the Michigan Pay Equity Network.