INDIANAPOLIS – On Tuesday, Senate Republicans rejected a proposal offered by Assistant Senate Democratic Leader Jean D. Breaux (D-Indianapolis) that would ensure fair pay regardless of gender, race or national origin and would give the Indiana Civil Rights Commission the jurisdiction to investigate and resolve complaints of unequal pay. The proposal, defeated along party lines, was offered as an amendment to House Bill (HB) 1001, legislation that frames the state’s next biennial budget.
“It’s simple. Hoosier women deserve equal pay for equal work. Today, April 14, Hoosier women will have finally earned what their male colleagues made in 2014,” said Sen. Breaux. “It takes women 104 additional days – 469 in total – to earn what men earn in a calendar year.”
Sen. Breaux pointed to wage gap statistics that rank Indiana sixth worst in the nation. Studies show Hoosier women earn just 75 cents for every dollar men earn. That adds up to $11,000 less on average in 2013. Over their career, women will lose out on more than $200,000 as a result of the gender pay gap. It is expected, if current workforce and earnings trends hold, that women’s pay will catch up to what men earn in 2086.
“This proposal gives the Indiana Civil Rights Commission the authority and jurisdiction to investigate and resolve complaints of unequal pay for the same work,” said Sen. Breaux. “I do not believe Indiana would have such a shocking wage gap if this enforcement mechanism were placed into law.”
Senate Democrats offered a number of amendments to HB 1001, including alterations to the state’s school funding formula and a legislative study of expanding civil rights law to LGBT Hoosiers. Those amendments were also defeated along party lines.
Sen. Breaux represents Indiana Senate District 34 which includes the near eastside of Indianapolis including portions of Center, Washington, Lawrence and Warren Townships. For more information on Sen. Breaux’s legislative agenda or other State Senate business call 1-800-382-9467 or visit www.IN.gov/S34.