Governor Janet Mills has proclaimed today, March 12, “National Equal Pay Day” in Maine, symbolizing how far into the year women must work to earn what men earned in the previous year.

Nationally, women age 15 and over who are working full-time, year-round are on average paid just 84 cents for every dollar paid to men.

Governor Janet Mills said:

On this Equal Pay Day, let us recommit to paying women fairly and equally based on their experience, their responsibilities, and their qualifications so that we can level the playing field for women across Maine and ensure that our state provides opportunity for all. Not only is it good public policy, but it’s the right thing to do.

Requirements regarding equal pay have been a part of Maine law since 1949, but wage inequality persists. To promote pay equality, Governor Mills signed legislation in 2019 to discourage employers from basing wages on an employee’s salary history.

Maine’s Equal Pay Law requires that employees be paid the same wages as employees of the opposite sex for work that is of a comparable nature in skill, effort, and responsibility.

Anyone who believes they are not being paid the same wages as an employee of the opposite sex for comparable work, should file an equal pay complaint with the Maine Department of Labor.

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