Massachusetts Prohibits Salary Questions On A Job Interview, Seeking To End The Wage Gap. | Gradient
Gradient

Massachusetts prohibits salary questions on a job interview, seeking to end the wage gap.

woman-job-seeker

Massachusetts makes a significant change aimed at reducing the wage gap between men and women, as well as between different ethnicities, banning employers from asking about a candidate’s previous salary. Legislators argue that basing a salary offer from a prospective employee’s previous earnings can perpetuate wage discrimination from the prior job. Massachusettes Governor Charlie Baker signed the bill into law on Monday. From The New York Times:

By barring companies from asking prospective employees how much they earned at their last jobs, Massachusetts will ensure that the historically lower wages and salaries assigned to women and minorities do not follow them for their entire careers. Companies tend to set salaries for new hires using their previous pay as a base line.

“I think very few businesses consciously discriminate, but they need to become aware of it,” said State Senator Pat Jehlen, a Democrat and one of the bill’s co-sponsors. “These are things that don’t just affect one job; it keeps women’s wages down over their entire lifetime.”

Federal law already prohibits gender-based pay discrimination, but violations are hard to prove and wage gaps persist in nearly every industry.

Nationally, women are paid 79 cents for every dollar that men earn, according to the United States Census Bureau. A number of factors affect that statistic, including the career fields women choose, but economists consistently find evidence of pay disparities not offset by other variables.

The Massachusetts law, which will go into effect in July 2018, takes other steps as well to combat pay discrimination. Companies will not be allowed to prohibit workers from telling others how much they are paid, a move that proponents say can increase salary transparency and help employees discover disparities.

Additionally, companies will have to provide a salary figure upfront, in the hopes of providing a baseline based on the company’s value of the position, avoiding bias about the candidate.

Of course, similar anti-employment discrimination policy has failed to reach its desired effect. For example, “Ban The Box” legislation forbids employers of asking candidates if they committed a felony early in the application process, theoretically assisting job-seekers affected by discrimination in the criminal justice system to join the workforce. However, studies have shown that the policy has hurt people of color that do not have records. 

Employers unable to verify the criminal record of a black applicant are more likely to move forward with white job seekers. In effect, if an employer can’t ask up front if a black candidate has a criminal background, they’ll just assume you did something!

Yes, yes, this is very depressing.

We hope that lawmakers can anticipate any adverse consequences from this equal pay policy, accomplishing a just, fairly compensated workforce for all.

If you enjoy ‘Reactions’, subscribe to our podcast, In Case You Missed It.  

New Pod Flow: Sounds Good With Branden Harvey “Jason Russell”

sounds-good-1-e1471274700720

Jason is the cofounder of the iconic non-profit Invisible Children which was founded to increase awareness of the horrendous activities of the LRA in Central Africa. Jason was also the director of the iconic Kony 2012 film that took the world by storm. In this two-part interview Jason and Branden talk about what it means to create a movement, what Jason experienced during his breakdown and subsequent recovery, and Jason’s experience in the world of theater.

New Pod Flow: Animalators, “ Aharon Rabinowitz”

animalators-1024x575

Aharon Rabinowitz is the head of marketing for Red Giant based in New York City. During our conversation, we discussed the importance of work life balance, his start as a production intern at Sesame Street and why artist’s feel personally offended when you reject their work.

New Pod Flow: In Case You Missed It, Episode 040

icymi-generic

United gets their cheap on, fake news, and Trump hired who?

New Pod Flow: Scribble & Jam, “Artist Matthew Perryman Jones”

screen-shot-2016-09-02-at-8-28-21-am-1

Welcome to Episode IV. This week, Dan spends some time with his favorite singer/songwriter, Matthew Perryman Jones. Matthew and Dan talk about panic attacks, growing up in Atlanta, the way music is informed by pain and suffering and the way music gives freedom.

If you have spent any time watching television in the last decade you have most likely heard one of Mattew’s songs on shows like Grey’s Anatomy, Pretty Little Liars, One Tree Hill and many others. His insightful writing and voice have drawn comparisons to Leonard Cohen and Jeff Buckley, and he is on the short list of songwriters who skillfully weave the deeply philosophical and the vivid utterly human without ever losing sight of either.

To get his new album Cold Answer, (which features the three songs from him you heard on this episode), visit MPJmusic.com.

Subscribe on iTunes.

New Pod Flow: Sounds Good With Branden Harvey “Next Steps After the Presidential Election”

sounds-good-1-e1471274700720

Branden sits down with writer and speaker Tyler Huckabee days after Donald Trump was elected President of the United States to talk about empathy, justice, listening, and where we go from here.

New Pod Flow: In Case You Missed It, Episode 039

icymi-generic

Special Election Edition, President Trump to legalized weed and everything in between.

This week we reflect on the election and discuss our strategies for staying sane.

New Pod Flow: Animalators, “Illo

animalators-1024x575

Luca and Ilenia are the founders of Illo, a studio based in Turin, Italy.  During our conversation, we discussed their self-driving video bot named Algo, how Illo was formed and how they’ve crafted a unique office culture.

New Pod Flow: In Case You Missed It, Episode 038

icymi-11-4-16-jpg

This week we discuss Beyonce’s night at the CMAs, last minute election plans and how SNL might save us all.

Subscribe on iTunes and Stitcher.

New Pod Flow: It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane, It’s a Podcast: Doctor Strange

birdplanepod-logo

We appreciate everyone sticking with us through this long hiatus but are planning our return even as we speak, with a bunch of new goodies and an updated format. In the meantime, here’s a brief primer on Marvel’s Sorcerer Supreme, Doctor Strange — just so you can go into the movie knowing what you’re getting yourself into.

SIGN UP TO STAY IN TOUCH WITH GRADIENT