New Paper Analyzes the Gender Pay Equity Challenge and Critiques Approaches of States and Localities

Comprehensive Analysis by HR Policy Association and Littler’s Workplace Policy Institute® Examines New Laws’ Impracticalities, Unintended Consequences

WASHINGTON, D.C. (February 1, 2018) – HR Policy Association and Littler’s Workplace Policy Institute® today released “The Gender Pay Equity Challenge: A Critique of How States and Localities Are Trying to Narrow the Gap.” The paper provides an overview of recent state legislation regarding equal pay, analyzes the maze of different approaches policymakers have taken, and highlights the serious challenges well-intentioned employers face in trying to comply with the laws.

HR Policy President and CEO Daniel V. Yager said, “No one seriously disputes that women and men should be paid the same amount for doing the same job. America’s employers work in good faith to follow this growing patchwork of equal pay laws. However, HR Policy Association’s members report that it is becoming almost impossible to monitor, operate within, and comply with all of these complex and varying regulations.”

HR Policy Association represents the most senior human resource executives of the largest companies doing business in the United States. Collectively, these companies employ more than 10 million Americans, or nearly nine percent of the U.S. workforce. Their chief human resource officers are responsible for finding, hiring and developing the talent needed for their organizations to thrive in the global marketplace.

“The trend of adding more regulation on top of existing laws – especially considering that pay discrimination is already illegal – could easily lead to unintended consequences, over-regulation and conflicting requirements,” said Michael Lotito, a Littler shareholder and co-chair of WPI. “Companies operating in multiple states and jurisdictions face a regulatory thicket, but they’re ready and willing to work with policymakers to make compliance easier and the goal of equal pay more attainable.”

HR Policy members point out that many of these state and local laws contain vague provisions, leaving practical application to employers seeking to comply and charging regulators with their interpretation and enforcement. Meanwhile, laws across state lines often conflict with one another, creating challenges as large, multi-state employers seek the implementation of uniform policies within their jurisdictions. Large employers are innovative in the ways they attract, retain and promote women. These employers are also committed to working work with policymakers at all levels of government to develop ideas that make compliance easier and the goal of equal pay more attainable.

“HR Policy Association welcomes the opportunity to share the findings of the paper as we continue to work with elected and appointed policymakers, thought leaders and coalition partners to eliminate pay discrimination with all due speed,” said Mr. Yager.

Read the paper:

HR Policy Association is the lead organization representing chief human resource officers of major employers. The Association consists of more than 380 of the largest corporations doing business in the United States and globally, and these employers are represented in the organization by their most senior human resource executive. Collectively, their companies employ more than 11 million employees in the United States, over nine percent of the private sector workforce, and 20 million employees worldwide. They have a combined market capitalization of more than $8 trillion. These senior corporate officers participate in the Association because of their commitment to improving the direction of human resource policy. Their objective is to use the combined power of the membership to act as a positive influence to better public policy, the HR marketplace, and the human resource profession. For more information visit

Littler’s Workplace Policy Institute® (WPI™) was created to be an effective resource for the employer community to engage in legislative and regulatory developments that impact their workplaces and business strategies. WPI harnesses the deep subject-matter knowledge of Littler – the world’s largest employment and labor law firm devoted exclusively to representing management – to ensure that policymakers in Washington and around the country hear the voice of employers. WPI is engaged with Congress, the executive branch and the courts on the most critical employment, labor and benefits issues of the day, including the requirements of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), Title VII and ever-changing implementing regulations. WPI provides timely alerts and updates on federal, state and local legislative, regulatory and judicial developments that affect employers. In addition, WPI can help employers shape workplace policy in a variety of ways.