After joining the Guild one of the first things I worked on was a pay equity committee. This committee was actually able to recommend to the Guild and company what the pay scales should be for about 200 jobs.
That’s not how most efforts go. The Guild is able to request all the pay information the company has about the bargaining unit including personal demographics. Your local is able to analyze that data and provide information back to the group. Often these studies expose huge disparities.
The Guild’s Human Right’s program has long promoted that every Guild should be doing this type of analysis routinely. We also provide assistance where needed from the National union. This effort could not be more important right now.
We know anecdotally that newsrooms especially seem to have gone backwards in terms of fewer women and fewer people of color. But our studies sadly also show that there are still pay disparities. Some employers are taking this seriously. The New York Times released their own analysis of their employee demographics. It does not include pay. But the local has been vigilant there in studying pay as well and pressuring the employer.
Some of our largest units have led the way in pursuing this. Right now the Guild’s collective bargaining program is suggesting to locals that everyone does this study as a preparation for bargaining. But nothing prevents you from doing this at any time.
Right now we are also promoting pay equity as a gateway to organizing. This is important work. If you or your local is interested in pursuing an analysis right now contact one of our rep’s or organizers – or call the Guild office at 202-434-7177.
We are also doing actions around April 2 which is Equal Pay Day. You should too. For more info contact sbasile (at) cwa-union.org, or mfiedler (at) cwa-union.org. As we always say – an injury to one is an injury to all.