Back to the Bargaining Table

An appeals court rejects "comparable worth"

Nurse and parole agent, stenographer and highway-equipment cleaner, secretary and tree trimmer: advocates of "comparable worth" contend that the women and men in such disparate jobs require similar degrees of education, skill and responsibility, and should be paid equivalent wages. That argument was set back last week when a three-judge federal appeals court unanimously overturned the nation's first ruling in favor of comparable worth. The court decided that an employer could be ordered to use comparable-worth pay standards only in cases of proven discrimination.

The new ruling affects some 15,500 employees of the state of Washington. Most of them are women...

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