A recent lawsuit filed by a Colorado judge alleges that female prosecutors, assistant city attorneys and other judicial officers make tens of thousands of dollars less on average than their male peers. That’s according to a recent lawsuit filed by a top-level career services judge, who asserts she earned less than male workers whom she supervised.
The gender discrimination lawsuit was filed in a federal district court in Denver by a plaintiff who alleged that when she complained about this discrepancy, her superior demoted her. She is now seeking compensatory damages and injunctive relief.
The lawsuit asserts that female workers in both the city’s district attorneys’ office and city attorney’s office were paid less than their male peers who worked the same jobs. In the city attorney’s office, men who worked in both non-supervisor and supervisory roles earned on average between $21,000 and nearly $23,000 more than their female counterparts. Meanwhile, in plaintiff’s district attorney’s office, men who worked in both non-supervisory and supervisory roles made between $8,000 and $11,200 more than the women who worked the very same jobs in the same office. They also generally are not given the same job titles as the men in their offices – even when they are largely performing the same work.
All this was reported by The Denver Post.
Although this is an out-of-state case, our California gender discrimination lawyers know the issue of gender pay discrimination is a widespread issue that affects women nationwide.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, women face a pay gap in almost every single industry. On average for all full-time and salary workers, median weekly wages for men were $895 for men and $726 for women. Marketing and sales managers – $1,603 to $1,258; Human resource workers – $1,158 to $984; Personal financial advisers – $1,738 to $1,033. The gender pay gap is reportedly worse for mothers and it only gets worse as they get older.
Further, contrary to popular belief, the pay gap hasn’t gotten any better in a full decade. At the current rate, the pay gap isn’t likely to close for fully 100 years. But that doesn’t make it any less illegal.
In the Colorado case, a city spokesman declined to offer comment on pending litigation, but insisted its pay scale takes into consideration each attorney’s experience and expertise as well as relevant market conditions.
Although the city insists the pay discrepancy figures are inaccurate, they do mirror the findings of another study by the Women’s Foundation of Colorado, which revealed women earn 80 percent of what men do.
Plaintiff in this case asserts she was hired in 2004 as the lead hearing officer in 2004 for an annual salary of $74,000. She was relatively quickly after promoted to chief hearing officer. Meanwhile, a male hearing officer hired after her – whom she supervised – earned $5,000 more than her for a full year after he was hired. Six years later, that same subordinate earned a raise that brought him to the exact salary level as his boss – $102,000 – even though she had significantly more responsibility than him. He then received another raise that resulted in him earning nearly $6,600 more than his boss.
This continued for years, even though she was his supervisor.
Plaintiff says when she brought this information to her employer’s attention, she was penalized when her subordinate’s salary continued to climb over hers and she was made to every week turn in a detailed log of everything she did that week – something other workers did not have to do.
If you suspect you have been the victim of gender discrimination in California, we can help.
Contact the employment attorneys at Nassiri Law Group, practicing in Orange County, Riverside and Los Angeles. Call 714-937-2020.
Denver’s top employment hearing officer sues over gender pay inequality, June 17, 2016, By Kirk Mitchell, The Denver Post
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