January 11, 2022

Don’t Get Goosed When You Pay the Gander

Today the U.S. EEOC reported that it filed a lawsuit against the Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration (MDOT SHA) alleging it violated federal law by paying a male district community liaison lower wages than his female co­workers because of his sex.

According to the suit, MDOT SHA hired a female into the position occupied by the Plaintiff, transferred him to the same job in another district, and paid to his successor several thousand dollars more. Additional female successors eventually occupied the Plaintiff’s former position, all paid by MDOT SHA thousands of dollars more than what it paid to him. The same was alleged for females performing the same work in other districts, all with less seniority and experience. The EEOC reports the salary disparities were as great as approximately $23,000.

Lessons Learned? Pay equity is an issue for all employees, not just women.  The Equal Pay Act of 1963 prohibits discrimination in compensation based on sex. When you conduct your internal compensation analyses, remember to look for adverse impact in compensation paid to men, as well as women.