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Be vigilant about gender discrimination in the Indiana workplace

Employers and employees in Indiana are becoming increasingly sensitive to issues of workplace discrimination, and rightly so. One of the biggest areas of potential discrimination is bias against women, borne out by the fact that nationally women in full-time jobs still earn only 77 percent of what men earn.

Now the White House has launched a campaign to actively narrow the gap between men and women in the workplace and hence reduce employment discrimination. The campaign will be focussing on economic issues that women face, including the wage gap and balancing family responsibilities with work.

A senior adviser to the president says that women are increasingly the main breadwinners in families. In 2013, married women contributed on average almost 45 percent to their household income. More women than men have college degrees, and women have made increasing inroads into historically male fields of work. Despite all of this, a significant wage gap remains.

An increase in the minimum wage, proposed by the government and currently being discussed in Congress, will help to close the gap, since more women than men are minimum wage earners.

The White House is also encouraging flexibility in the workplace to account for woman responsible for child care and elder care. The government is actively exploring ways to support family-friendly policies in business. A government adviser noted that engaging women more fully in the workplace will help the U.S. to be more globally competitive. We have come so far in accepting the differences in each individual, we certainly should see laws reflecting an equal treatment of the sexes within society as well as the workplace.

In cases of hiring, treatment in the workplace or termination, if you feel that your gender plays a part in your being treated differently from other employees, filing a workplace discrimination lawsuit may be worth your while. In many cases in Indiana employees have received compensation for discrimination.

Source: Indianapolis Recorder, “White House promotes economic issues facing women,” March 12, 2014

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