I am noticing my male coworkers in the same position are paid more. What Constitutes Gender Discrimination for Equal Pay?

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Question:

I work in the engineering department as a programmer at a high-tech company.  I recently found out that the other male programmers are earning a substantially higher income than myself.  Since I am a female, and currently the only female programmer in the group, does this constitute gender discrimination?

Answer:

The Federal Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employers from discriminating against job seekers and employees on the basis of race, religion, sex, pregnancy, and national origin.  Private employers with less than 15 employees are not subject to the Act.  However, California prohibits racial or sexual discrimination no matter how few workers the company employs.

Another federal law is the Equal Pay Act (EPA).  This Act prohibits gender discrimination in the form of unequal pay for “substantially equal” work.  A woman who files an EPA claim must show that she was paid lower wages in performing substantially equal work as her male co-workers.

Before an employee can file an employment discrimination lawsuit in court, he or she must first present the charge to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

If you believe that you have been a victim of civil rights discrimination based on your gender, you may want to consult with an attorney who specializes in this type of law.

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