Looking At Equal Pay: What It’s Based On, Where It’s Found, And the Resolution-Value of Mediation (Confidentiality) For All

To help highlight the breadth of consideration Equal Pay issues ought to receive, by plaintiffs and defendants, I found an article by Allen Smith, J.D. which I believe encapsulates the gravamen of Equal Pay litigation.  Tougher State Laws Increase Scrutiny on Pay Equity“:

  • dissects Federal vs. State claim considerations
  • points out potential damage exposure by a lack of diversity and inclusion, 
  • illuminates what those factors, sometimes subtly, convey in terms of evidence, and personnel attraction and retention, and
  • a variety of employment practice areas that ought to be part of the analysis

Consider some of the insight the author/article shares:

  • “Don’t look at pay equity in isolation…. [A] pay equity study should look at applications, hires, promotions and terminations….”
  • “An employer may have equitable recruiting and hiring, but also have high turnover and not be a good place to work at as a woman, for example.”
  • “The central question that is being litigated more often these days is whether an employer has done a study on whether such [pay disparity] factors truly are job-related and consistent with business necessity.”

Another matter to think about is how to address the inequity.  A challenge to pay parity could be harmful to one financially and professionally.  It may bring scrutiny to someone or a business that exceeds expectations and could lead to unintended consequences

I can help.  By engaging in an organizational mediation (or mediation within the workplace), parties can prudently address their concerns as quickly, confidentially and creatively as possible.  The sooner the better.  Having mediated many hundreds of workplace conflicts in their early stages, I can say that time is not on either party’s side.  Left alone, the issues can:

  • grow,
  • permeate the workforce,
  • affect morale and relationships,
  • give rise to other claims, or
  • at the very least, draw on limited reserves in the course of confronting, analyzing and/or correcting possible liabilities.

Remedies that may only be available early on can also be lost.

If you have any matters pending now, developing, or with potential for dispute, please call or write me. I may be available on short notice.  I am available to consult and mediate, as well as present, in-house, publicly and on professional associations panels. Recommendations to colleagues are also most welcome. I am confident our time will be productive.

I look forward to hearing from you.

About Maria Hanna Joseph

Maria Hanna Joseph is Principal of Joseph Mediation. Her 25 years of experience in employment law, include 16+ of work and mediating for the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination which through which she has gained valuable insight into the MCAD, its practices and decision making. This, as well as her experience in plaintiff and defense litigation, with private and public sector clients, international and local business concerns, and in issues from harassment and discrimination, to noncompetition agreements, business operation, transgender workplace matters, retaliation and many others, lend her valuable perspective for understanding and mediating an array of legal and personal issues. In terms of volume, Maria has served more than 2,000 cases. Maria's practice has been honed with study of mediation at Harvard Law School's Program of Instruction for Lawyers, negotiation at Harvard Law School's Program on Negotiation, and in the disciplines of Transformative Mediation and Family/Domestic Mediation, which are significant assets in managing the personal nature of employment disputes, and conflict in general. Attorneys and parties know Maria as candid, pragmatic and persevering in her commitment to help them achieve meaningful settlements while keeping sight of their most important interests. The insight and creativity afforded by her experience and training are realized in the resolutions that manifest. These qualities, along with her demeanor and the trust she engenders, have earned Maria a reputation for being able to manage highly tense and fraught situations and individuals, and settle a wide variety of disputes and tough cases.
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