Breaching the Gender Gap: Obama Wants Companies to Disclose Pay Data.

The Obama administration is proposing a new rule to address unequal pay practices by requiring companies with more than 100 employees to submit salary data by race, gender and ethnicity.

The announcement comes seven years after President Obama signed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act — his first piece of legislation as president — which makes it easier for women to challenge discriminatory pay in court.

However a substantial pay gap between men and women persists, and it affects black and Latina women the most, Obama said Friday as he introduced the proposal. The president said he would continue to work to reduce the gap as long as he was in office. “Social change never happens overnight,” he said. “It is a slog and there are times when you just have to chip away and chip away. … It’s reliant on all of us to keep pushing that boulder up the hill.”

Collecting more data would assist in enforcing equal pay laws, the administration says, and “provide better insight” into the gender pay gap across industries and occupations.

The proposed pay data reporting requirement would cover more than 63 million employees, according to the administration. It’s expected to be finalized by September, with the first reports due in the fall of 2017.

The comparison of median earnings is sometimes criticized as a crude metric for the gender pay gap. Economists have found that if you control for a host of factors, the pay gap is smaller — but persistent. The gap varies widely based on a woman‘s age and her race. It also shifts depending which industry you look at.

Requiring large employers to report their pay data, the administration argues, would allow “better insight” into exactly how the pay gap is influenced by industry and occupation.

To read the complete story visit http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/01/29/464856100/to-shine-a-light-on-salary-gaps-obama-wants-companies-to-disclose-pay-data