All eyes are on the Supreme Court this week as it considers whether to allow a class-action lawsuit against Wal-Mart to go forward.
Up to 1.6 million women are part of the sexual-discrimination lawsuit, which claims the giant discount retailer – which is the world’s largest employer – favors men over women when it comes to more pay and promotions. But reports say the court may block the 10-year-old lawsuit, in part, because of lack of evidence, which could make it harder for other workers to bring class-action claims against large employers. Wal-Mart argues that it’s wrong to allow so many women to come together to sue, because it forces the company to defend the treatment of female employees regardless of their job or location.
Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who helped advance women’s rights before she became a judge, chastised Wal-Mart for getting continuous reports showing a pay gap and disparity among men and women at the company and seemingly not doing anything to remedy it. All the female justices – Ginsburg Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan – all voiced at least some support. But other judges said the women weren’t making a clear enough case.
The case is historic, because if the Supreme Court allows it to go forward, it would be the largest employment discrimination class-action suit in history involving potentially billions of dollars. But it also raises very important issues involving gender equality in the workplace.
For example, women still only earn 81 cents for every $1 made by men working the same job. And women held 36.5 percent of all managerial positions, including mid-level and senior positions, in 2009; among senior-level officials and managers, 28 percent are women. A study released yesterday by Glassdoor shows that although workers are becoming more confident about their chances in the job market, men are more likely to expect a raise in the next six months than women.
Take our poll below and let us know what you think about the gender gap in the workplace.
For more career stories:
Want more genConnect?
- For more daily expert updates, follow genConnect on Twitter and Facebook
- To directly connect with any of our experts, sign up for genConnect.com
These are one expert’s views on the news. Share with us your thoughts in the comments box below.
Category: Views on the News