04-R 177

2004 -- S 3041

Enacted 04/20/04


S E N A T E  R E S O L U T I O N



     Introduced By: Senators Perry, Goodwin, Gallo, Paiva-Weed, and Sosnowski

     Date Introduced: April 20, 2004


     WHEREAS, Women have entered the labor force in large numbers over the last decade.

Rhode Island State Government has affirmed gender wage gaps in at least two major studies of

the state’s job evaluation and classification systems. As a result of both studies, the administration

with the Legislative Commission on Pay Equity has affirmed its support for the point factor

system as a fair and equitable compensation system. The most recent study indicates that the

wage gap is persistent and continues to widen under the current methodology; and

     WHEREAS, National data shows that the wage gap for women of color is sixty-four

cents for every dollar that men earn overall, while in Rhode Island it is fifty-two cents for women

of color; and

     WHEREAS, Raising women’s wages would increase family income and cut poverty; and

     WHEREAS, Pay equity would boost pay for women and men in predominately female

jobs in Rhode Island; and

     WHEREAS, The Senate supports the principle of pay equity for public employees and

encourages the administration to work toward ensuring equal pay among job classes with similar

levels of responsibility, knowledge, skill and effort; and

     WHEREAS, The Senate also supports all efforts to attain and implement accurate and

unbiased job evaluation systems and pay setting processes to foster equity for all jobs; and

     WHEREAS, The Senate also supports the use of unbiased job evaluation systems which

evaluates jobs on gender and race neutral factors to distinguish between legitimate differences in

wages and wage differentials which are due to sex and race discrimination and occupational

segregation; and

     WHEREAS, Most research on this subject has concluded that much of the wage gap is

attributed to sex and race based wage discrimination; and

     WHEREAS, Fifteen states in the nation have adopted statutes and twenty-four states have

conducted studies and are moving toward pay equity; and

     WHEREAS, The National Conference of State Legislatures urges all states to move

toward the establishment of equitable compensation relationships between female and race

dominated classes and further to establish pay equity through the enforcement of existing laws

and the enactment of laws to guarantee equal pay for work of equal value; now, therefore be it

     RESOLVED, That this Senate of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations

hereby declares April 20, 2004 as “Rhode Island Pay Equity Day” and urges all Rhode Islanders

to join in urging all the other states in the nation to move toward the establishment of equitable

compensation; and be it further

     RESOLVED, That the Secretary of State be and he hereby is authorized and directed to

transmit duly certified copies of this resolution to the Director of the Department of

Administration, the Personnel Administrator of the Division of Human Resources, and the co-

chairs of the Legislative Commission on Pay Equity.