Introduction: Equal Pay for Work of Equal Value in Britain and the USA

  • Peggy Kahn

Abstract

‘Equal pay for work of equal value’, often referred to as ‘comparable worth’ or ‘pay equity’ in the United States of America (USA), emerged as both a movement and an employment policy in Britain and the USA in the late 1970s and 1980s. In Britain, women in unions campaigned to introduce equal value into workplaces from banks to hospitals. Under the dual pressures of union activity and an amended Equal Pay Act, employers undertook large-scale job re-evaluation or adjusted the pay of individual women workers. In the USA, groups of women tried to establish in law the principle of comparable worth, campaigned for comparable worth as an employment policy for workers in the public sector, and educated a broader public about the principles underlying comparable worth. At the same time, rank-and-file women went on strike for comparable worth. Many states conducted comparable-worth studies of their workforces and made substantial salary adjustments as a result.

Keywords

Europe Nism Kelly Defend Trade Unionism 

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Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peggy Kahn

There are no affiliations available

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