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Unequal pay could be a form of workplace discrimination

Oregon workers know they have the right to a workplace that is free from harassment and discrimination of all kinds. If you work in an environment that is inappropriate or hostile, you have the right to speak up and take action to make the negative treatment stop. However, it can be helpful to remember discrimination does not always come in the form of harassing words or actions.

In many cases, unequal pay is a form of discrimination. There are state and federal laws in place intended to prevent unfair wage practices, but they still happen. Workers who are not paid fairly or believe their employer is practicing any type of unfair treatment can fight for their rights. If you believe you are a victim of unequal pay for equal work, you have the right to speak out. 

How can you know whether you are a victim?

One of the most important laws protecting you from unequal pay is The Equal Pay Act. This law prohibits employers from paying men and women different amounts of money for essentially the same task. Unfortunately, women are often the victims of unequal pay, making significantly less than their male counterparts do for equal types of jobs.

It can be difficult to determine if you are a victim of any type of wage discrimination or unfair pay practices. Typically, when the content of two jobs is essentially equal, the two people performing those jobs should make equal amounts of money. Unfair or unequal pay is not always about the amount in your paycheck, but it can also involve the following:

  • How you receive pay for overtime
  • Stock options offered to employees
  • Medical benefits and support
  • Profit sharing opportunities
  • Bonus plans offered to employees

Victims who experience one or more of these inequities could have a right to file a claim against their employer. If you can prove your employer is breaking discrimination laws, you could have a rightful claim to financial compensation.

You can hold your employer accountable

Your employer is accountable for following all federal laws and preventing a workplace that allows or overlooks discriminatory treatment, including in wage and compensation systems. 

If you believe you are the victim of wage discrimination or unequal pay, it is helpful to first seek a complete evaluation of your case. This will allow you to understand your options and seek a satisfactory conclusion to your legal concerns. You do not have to simply accept unfair treatment from your employer, but you can take action to make it stop.

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