Governor Tom Wolf Signs Executive Order Promoting Equal Pay For Women

The Executive Order eliminates the hiring practice of requiring job candidates to provide salary history.

Shelby Cassesse
June 06, 2018 - 4:36 pm
Governor Wolf signs executive order to close the gender pay gap.

Photo By: Commonwealth Media Services

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PITTSBURGH (Newsradio 1020 KDKA) - Joined by First Lady Frances Wolf, Sens. Christine Tartaglione and Judy Schwank, Reps. Maria Donatucci and Brian Sims, as well as the Pennsylvania Commission for Women and other advocates, Governor Tom Wolf signed an executive order ending the hiring practice of state agencies requiring a job applicant to provide their salary history during the hiring process. 

Governor Wolf says this practice exasperates the pay gap.

"This traps women in a cycle of being underpaid, causing them to disclose previous wages, which may have been significantly lower than they should have been," he said. "It just perpetuates the cycle. It also allows employers to hire them at a lower wage than they should have."

The executive order directs state agencies to also base salaries on job responsibilities, position pay range, and an applicant's job knowledge and skills. In addition, it directs them to clearly explain pay range on job postings. 

Pennsylvania women working full-time make 79 cents to the dollar of what men are paid for the same work. That is a gap of 21 percent and is worse than the U.S. pay gap of 21 percent. 

Governor Wolf explained these numbers are worse for ethnic minority women. 

"African American women make just 68 cents on the dollar for the same work," he said. "Native American women make just 61 cents on the dollar for the same work, and Hispanic and Latino women make just 56 cents on the dollar for the same work."

The executive order applies to management-level positions within state agencies, and takes effect in 90 days.