Pay Equity: Public Pushes Gender Equity, Legal Battleground Moves to States
Concerns about pay inequality have intensified in recent years, with politicians, media and the public voicing strong opposition to employers paying women and other historically marginalized groups less for the same or substantially similar work. In addition to Federal regulations, states and cities across the U.S. are increasingly adopting pay equity laws in an effort to close pay gaps. Outside the U.S. the concept of equal pay for work of equal value is a growing trend and many countries are adopting national gender pay reporting requirements. Compliance with intersecting equal pay laws can be daunting, placing a huge burden on HR departments. Getting this important issue wrong can have serious ramifications for employers. Class action lawsuits focused on fair pay are increasing, and negative publicity can hurt employee recruiting, retention and customer relationships. On the flip side, many employers are touting their record on pay equity to gain a strategic edge in their field.
Joshua Kirkpatrick focuses his practice on employment litigation and counseling. He represents clients in a wide range of employment and labor law matters in federal and state court in Colorado and Montana, in arbitration and mediation, and before numerous government agencies. He has litigated hundreds of cases arising under dozens of laws regulating the employment relationship, including many cases involving claims of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation. Joshua has extensive litigation experience relating to state and federal wage and hour issues, including many claims that have involved attempts by plaintiffs to obtain class action or collective action treatment. He also focuses on consulting with a wide range of employers on wage and hour compliance, ensuring best practices, and avoiding class litigation. He is a core member of Littler’s Wage and Hour practice group.
Laurie J. Rust
Laurie J. Rust partners with clients to understand the business, financial, and practical motivations and implications of each matter. She routinely defends companies against employment-related charges and claims before administrative agencies, including the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Colorado Civil Rights Division, the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment, and the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement. Laurie provides employment advice and counsel on a wide range of issues, such as hiring, discipline, termination, accommodating disability, wage and hour compliance and audits, federal and state immigration compliance, recreational and medical marijuana, leaves of absence, social media, and trade secrets. In addition, she works with employers to draft employment agreements, employee manuals, severance agreements, and other employment policies and procedures. She regularly provides training on harassment and all aspects of employment law.
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