Despite laws to the contrary, women nationwide earn on average just 77% of the wages earned by men, with that percentage dropping significantly for women of color. Legislation aimed to address the issue in Rhode Island by making it easier for individuals facing wage differentials to file a civil action against their employer. The ACLU testified in support of this legislation. But the House and Senate differed on how to address the issue. While the ACLU supported the version passed by the Senate in April, the amended House version passed in June raised significant concerns, as it had provisions that actually weakened protections in existing state law. The Senate refused to vote on the House version, and both pieces of legislation died.
Equal Pay (H 7427A as amended, S 2475A as amended)
Representative Susan Donovan and Senator Gayle Goldin
Competing Versions Passed House and Senate