Equal pay bill clears U.S. Senate

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By Carol A. Clark

A significant breakthrough in the equal pay fight Thursday is another sign that the country is getting back on track. Sen. Jeff Bingaman and 60 of his colleagues approved legislation Thursday that will effectively overturn a Supreme Court decision that has limited American worker's abilities to seek recourse on pay discrimination.

The Fair Pay Restoration Act bill now heads to President Barack Obama for signature.

"We must work to ensure that the courts remain a source of redress for employees, many of whom are fighting much larger and better financed employers," Bingaman said in a press release. "Employees should not face unreasonable obstacles in their efforts to pursue a discrimination claim and to seek appropriate remedies."

Bingaman explained that by placing undue burdens on employees to quickly prove discrimination, the decision has negatively altered the use of the courts as a remedy to discriminatory conduct by employers.

Employers who are more successful at hampering their employee's efforts to prove discrimination and who cause delay are currently afforded more protection than those employers who treat their employees justly under the law, he added.

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