Has Google Been Paying its Female Employees Less? And Are You Really Surprised?

The United States Department of Labor has initiated a lawsuit against Google.  It alleges that Google has been paying it’s female employees less than their male counter parts.  Now, I don’t mean to sound cynical, but how is this news?  Good job on the DoL initiating a lawsuit, but we know this happens.  Don’t we?  If we really want to get into it, there are some races that are paid even less.  It’s a possible double whammy if you’re a woman and not white.  But I’m not going to go down that path.  At least not right now.

A solicitor for the DoL has indicated that they are still investigating, but that they have evidence that the company is discriminating against women.  I really am holding back on what I feel like is common knowledge.  One could make the argument that we haven’t had evidence that this takes place.  But I would ask – we don’t?  I guarantee you, if I look at the wage of a male counter-part of mine, he makes at least 20% more than I do.  Why?  Because we still live in a sexist (among other things) society.  We live in a society where the man has to be the bread winner in the family.  And heaven forbid that there might be a single mother out there trying to make ends meet.  But go ahead, pay her less because she’s just a woman.  (Note, these comments are dripping with sarcasm)

Seriously, DoL?  I get it that you’re following rules, and maybe that’s difficult.  But it’s really taken you until now to gather enough evidence to know that there is an imbalance?  Lets just look at it from a pure statistical perspective.  Because we can’t argue with stats.  According to the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, “in 2015, female full-time, year-round workers made only 80 cents for every dollar earned by men, a gender wage gap of 20 percent.”  So what I’m hearing is that the DoL wasn’t able to come up with enough “evidence” in 2 years to be able to get this ball rolling?  Or am I missing something?

The article I read indicated that the DoL found “systemic” discrepancies related to how Google pays it’s female employees.  Hey, Google.  Have you ever heard of pay equity?  Even if you want to get away with not paying in an equitable manner, shouldn’t you be following some kind of pay equity practice just to make it look good?  Now I’m not saying I agree with that, but Google isn’t dumb.  What do they think they’re doing?  Depending on the outcome of this case, I can’t see it boding well for them from a recruitment perspective.   What woman is going to want to go to work for them knowing that they’re paying less?  And further, it makes women feel like they’re not wanted in the workplace  When, in many cases, they are more qualified for these jobs than their male counter parts!

I never really thought of myself as a feminist.  Honestly, I’ve always wanted an equitable society.  But I can’t handle how poorly we treat a large portion of our population.  Be thankful that I’m not getting into how this applies to different races.  Women have been paid less for a very long time.  And the work is equivalent.  Maybe the Department of Labor is a little late on this one.  But at least they’re doing something about it.  Finally.  Unfortunately, I think it’s going to take more than just a lawsuit against Google to make any kind of impact.  But keep trying!

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