In an editorial coined by New Hampshire Senator Sylvia Larson (D-Concord) today, she makes the already disproven claim that there is a ‘wage gap’ between men and women in the workforce. Larson is so hell bent on believing the studies that have been proven false, she’s willing to hurt women in the workforce by passing an unnecessary bill. The wage gap that Larson speaks of is a myth. In the past, women indeed were paid less than men but it has been proven over and over again that women earn the same or more than men if all things are equal (experience, education, time on the job etc.). What Larson’s ill-conceived bill (the same bill that failed in Washington D.C. previously with a Democrat controlled Senate) will do is set women back decades despite the great strides they have made since entering the workforce.
How will the Paycheck Fairness Act hurt Granite State women? Simple, it will put employers in a position of either paying women less than they negotiate for when seeking a new job or it will take away women’s flexibility in negotiating for a lower salary for more flexible hours. With this Act, employees will now be able to freely discuss their wages with each other with no ramifications from their employer. Not only will this create chaos in the workplace but it will take away a woman’s ability to create the perfect scenario for herself at a new job. A few scenarios below that will indeed occur if this Act is passed by the New Hampshire State Legislature:
- If a man is currently working at a job and a woman applies for the same job but is smart and negotiates for a higher salary than the man is currently making, the employer is not going to offer her what she wants (and/or deserves), they are going to have to pay her the lower salary that the man is making. Why? If the man finds out she’s making more than him for the same job (despite the fact she was simply a better negotiator) the man can turn around and sue the employer for discrimination!
- If a woman applies for a job and decides she wants more flexible hours in order to spend more time with her family, the employer will not be able to allow her that flexibility because if the woman finds out the man is making more money, she can sue the employer for discrimination!
- If a man and woman are making equal pay for doing the same job but the woman goes above and beyond, the employer will not be able to give her a bigger raise because if the man finds out, he can sue for discrimination!
In all scenarios, women lose. When employers are forced to make hiring and salary decisions based on the possibility of frivolous lawsuits, they must tread lightly in order to avoid spending hundreds of thousands of dollars in lawyer’s fees. This takes the advantages that women have gained over the decades out of their hands. Women aren’t weak little flowers that don’t know how to negotiate. They have been negotiating for higher salary, better benefits and flexible work schedules for years now. What the New Hampshire Democrats’ ‘Paycheck Fairness Act’ achieves is to set women in the workforce back decades.