Sens. Breen and Vitelli to speak on equal pay at American Association of University Women State Convention

Posted: April 28, 2017 | Senator Breen, Senator Vitelli

AUGUSTA — Sen. Cathy Breen, D-Falmouth, and Sen. Eloise Vitelli, D-Arrowsic, will serve as a panelists for a discussion on pay equity at the 2017 American Association of University Women (AAUW) Maine state Convention.

“I began my career working on women’s economic security. Thirty years later, we still have a wage gap, despite some positive gains. I look forward to contributing to the discussion to make more people aware of the problem and find concrete ways to get nearer to full equity,” said Sen. Breen.

Sen. Breen has introduced a bill during this legislature — LD 1259, “An Act Regarding Pay Equality” — that would ban employers from asking prospective employees about their salary history, as prior salaries may not reflect the true value of the worker. The bill directs employers to recognize that salaries should be based on market value, job performance and credentials, not prior salaries that may not reflect the true value of the worker.  It  would also allow workers to freely discuss their salaries without fear of punishment, thus increasing transparency in the workplace.

Sen. Vitelli is the Director of Program and Policy for New Ventures Maine, where she has worked for the last 35 years advocating for women’s career advancement and entrepreneurship. She is the lead cosponsor on LD 197, “RESOLUTION, Proposing an Amendment to the Constitution of Maine To Explicitly Protect against Sex Discrimination,” which will go before the full Legislature in the coming weeks.

“The pay gap costs women significant lost income – $431,000 over a 40 year career according to the latest Measures of Growth report gender income disparity measure,” said Sen. Vitelli. “Unfortunately, progress in closing the wage gap has slowed in the last decade so this is an issue that we need to pay attention to.”

WHAT: Panel discussion on equal pay in Maine, American Association of University Women State Convention

WHO: Sens. Cathy Breen, D-Falmouth, and Eloise Vitelli, D-Arrowsic

WHEN: Saturday, April 29, 2017, 10:15 – 11:00 a.m.

WHERE: Summit Room, Spann Student Commons, Thomas College, 180 West River Road in Waterville, Maine.