Advocates lobby for equal pay at LA State Capitol

BATON ROUGE, LA (LOCAL33/FOX44) - The fight for equal pay continues as advocates lobbied at the Louisiana State Capitol Thursday. 

"The national stat is 80 we are 66 to 68. That is pitiful. That is too low," said Camille Moran, the equal pay lobbying director.

Moran is talking about the wage gap between men and women here in the Pelican State. Moran has been fighting for equal pay for more than a decade. 

"I have been doing this since 2005. This will be my 13th session to lobby for equal pay. You know, it's just way passed time. It's just way passed time," said Moran. 

This legislative session, the American Association of University Women came together with other advocacy organizations for a day of lobbying and to make a change. 

"Right now, we do have an equal pay law that only applies to employees. We would like that disclosure, that ability to talk about your wages without fear to apply to all workers in our state. This year, we have a really good bill, HB 222, that lifts pay secrecy, that allows that women don't have to fear retaliation or fear punishment for talking about their wages or men for that matter," said Julie Schwam Harris, advocacy chair of the Independent Women's Organization. 

Equal pay is not the only battle they are facing this year. 

"We will be here fighting until this changes. We will be here fighting for equal pay, equal rights, family and medical leave, against domestic violence and any issue that affects women and children and their families and the economy as a whole. We will be here fighting," concluded Moran. 

Some critics of the equal pay fight say the wage gap statistic does not take into account education, hours worked and years of experience. Right now, there are multiple bills waiting to be discussed in regards to equal pay, minimum wage, and economic security, but advocates don't know exactly when it will be on the agenda. 

 

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