For years we have fought for gender equality on all levels of employment. From equal pay to equal opportunity in hiring, there are many fronts on which we seek gender equality. However, one experience is unlikely to be available to all genders, at least in this lifetime: pregnancy.
The gender wage gap is real. In short, women earn less than men for doing the same work. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the gender wage gap in California has ranged between 10% and 17% over the last 20 years.
Governor Gavin Newsom signed a slate of pro-employee legislation into law in the past month, including critical freelancer/independent contractor and family leave laws. In addition, businesses with more than 100 employees are now required to report data on salary by gender and race to the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing, providing more transparency into the wage gap.
Families in California should celebrate. Governor Newsom signed SB1383 into law, significantly expanding California’s family and medical leave coverage. The bill will go into effect January 1, 2021. Previously, only people who worked at companies of 50 or more employees were covered by the California Family Rights Act (CFRA). Now employees who work for smaller employers are covered, too.