Comparable Worth Scores in Washington and Chicago

American Libraries, February 1986 | Go to article overview

Comparable Worth Scores in Washington and Chicago


To settle a 12-year dispute over whether equal pay should be given for jobs of comparable worth, Washington Gov. Booth Gardner and union officials signed a $106.5 million accord Dec. 31, the deadline set by the state legislature.

The agreement, which must be approved by the legislature and a federal court, is expected to raise the wages of some 35,000 state employees, including library technicians.

The settlement provides that the worth of jobs be measured in terms of ski, effort, training, education, responsibility, and working conditions. Through a complex distribution formula, the contract will bring the workers, mostly women, salary increases of at least 2.5 percent in addition to any regular pay hikes.

Gerald W. McEntee, president of the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), called the agreement "the latest in a sold string of successes on the pay equity front for 1985 in half a dozen states and several major municipalities. It establishes pay equity as a fact of fife in state and local government. …

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