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Local News

Bertino-Tarrant's equal pay bill signed into law

State Sen. Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant, D-Shorewood
State Sen. Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant, D-Shorewood

Gov. JB Pritzker signed into law a bill aimed at ensuring equal pay for equal work, of which state Sen. Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant was the chief cosponsor.

The law, H.B. 834, amends the Equal Pay Act of 2003 and prohibits employers from requiring job applicants to disclose their past salary during the interview process in an effort to address the gender pay gap in the state, according to a news release. Pritzker signed the bill Wednesday.

"In 2019, a worker should not receive a different wage based on any factor not directly related to their qualifications, experience and job performance," said Bertino-Tarrant, D-Shorewood. "This new law renews the state's commitment to policies that promote and ensure pay equity."

Bertino-Tarrant said she worked with the bill's sponsor to make it more business-friendly.

The law will go into effect 60 days after it was signed into law. A number of entities like the Illinois Attorney General's Office, National Association of Social Workers, Laborer's International Union and Illinois National Organization for Women supported the bill.

Women in Illinois make up almost half the workforce but earn 79% of what men earn, according to the release.

"As other states appear to be moving backward on equal rights, Illinois will continue to move forward to ensure employees are receiving the same pay for the same work," Bertino-Tarrant said. "This new law will help Illinois end the wage gap."

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