Today the National Women’s Law Center, together with the American Civil Liberties Union and 32 other organizations, took a stand in support of the women of Wal-Mart by filing a friend-of-the-court brief in Wal-Mart v. Dukes, the Supreme Court case.
The brief tells a shocking story. Women at Wal-Mart on average earned $5,000 less than men, even though women tended to have higher performance ratings and more seniority. Women also were less likely to be promoted to store manager positions and had to wait significantly longer for promotions than men.
As our new fact sheet highlights, scores of statements from women employed at Wal-Mart describe the gender stereotyping women regularly faced on the job. The claim in this case is that these sorts of stereotypes affected pay and promotion decisions at Wal-Mart because of Wal-Mart’s company-wide reliance on unchecked, subjective decision making by individual managers.
At the heart of this case is an important question — Is Wal-Mart too big to be held accountable?
We don’t think so. The Supreme Court has long held that when informal personnel practices lead to a discriminatory result, a class of employees can challenge this practice. The Supreme Court should rule that under these laws, there is no such thing as “too big to be held accountable.”
We will keep you updated on this case and provide opportunities to take action. Cases like this remind us of the profound and lasting impact our courts have on women and their families and why it’s important to confirm federal judges who understand the impact of the law on individuals and who are willing to hold powerful corporate interests accountable when they violate the law.
Will you pledge to Stand with the Women of Wal-Mart and continue to fight against pay discrimination? www.nwlc.org
Thank you for continuing the fight against pay discrimination.
Fatima Goss Graves
Vice President for Education and Employment
National Women’s Law Center