Cuomo Signs Equal Pay Law At Champion USA Women's Soccer Team's NYC Canyon Of Heroes Parade

At the ticker-tape parade celebrating the World Champion USA Women's Soccer Team, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed pay equity legislation to close the gender wage gap.

A woman attending the Canyon of Heroes parade in Manhattan holds up an "Equal Pay" sign.
A woman attending the Canyon of Heroes parade in Manhattan holds up an "Equal Pay" sign. Photo Credit: Contributed
Cuomo signs into law legislation that expands equal pay laws to prohibit unequal pay on the basis of a protected class for all substantially similar work, and forbids employers from asking prospective employees about their salary history. Photo Credit: NYGovCuomo

Minutes before the Wednesday, July 10 parade through the Canyon of Heroes in downtown Manhattan, Cuomo also called on US Soccer to pay the women's national team the same as the men's national team.

"There is no rationale why women should not get paid what men get paid. These are women's soccer players, they play the same game as the men's soccer players, and they play it better -- so if there is any economic rationale, the men should get paid less than the women," Cuomo said.

"New York will continue to lead the way forward and stand in solidarity with women and girls in every corner of this state. By signing this legislation, we are not only doing the right thing, we are also doing the moral thing and equal pay for equal work is now the law in the State of New York," Cuomo said.

The legislation prohibits all employers, public and private, who do business in New York State, from asking prospective employees about their salary history and compensation, and expands the definition of "equal pay for equal work." 

These measures build on two executive orders signed by Cuomo last year to eliminate the wage gap by prohibiting state entities from evaluating candidates based on wage history and requiring state contractors to disclose data on the gender, race and ethnicity of employees - leveraging taxpayer dollars to drive transparency and advance pay equity statewide.

During his remarks, Cuomo also praised the performances of two New Yorkers on the women's winning soccer team, both of whom are Long Islanders: Allie Long of Northport and Crystal Dunn of Rockville Centre. A resident of Fairfield County, Alyssa Naeher of Stratford, was the team's starting goalkeeper.

One of the bill's sponsors, State Sen. David Carlucci, said: “The US Women’s Soccer team reminds us equal work or even winning is not rewarded with equal pay. Women every day continue to be disenfranchised, making 80 cents or less to every $1 a man is paid."

Carlucci, who represents parts of Westchester and Rockland counties, added, "The first step in closing the gender pay gap is ending the salary history question so low salaries do not follow women throughout their career."  

Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins of Westchester said, "As we honor the United States women's national soccer team for its World Cup victory, we are reminded that these champions do not make the same that the US Men's Team makes, despite winning back to back World Cup championships. 

"The wage gap in New York is just as glaring with White women earning 89 cents to each dollar earned by men, a gap that is even more pronounced among women of color, with Black women earning 63 cents and Latinas earning 54 cents for every dollar. 

"The bills signed into law today will right this wrong by protecting employees from wage discrimination and ending the practice of salary history requests. We are proud to lead the way in fighting for equal pay for equal work to build a stronger and fairer New York."

Earlier Daily Voice coverage of related state legislation can be found by clicking here. 

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