FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Supreme Court Decision in Ledbetter a Major Step Backward for Working Women, National Women's Leader Says
Statement of Debra L. Ness, President, National Partnership for Women & Families
WASHINGTON, DC — May 29, 2007 — "Today's U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Ledbetter v. Goodyear is a painful and costly step backward for the nation and a deep disappointment to those of us who want to see strong measures in place to give all workers meaningful protections against discrimination.
It is clear that Lilly Ledbetter experienced egregious wage discrimination. That is why it is so disappointing that the Court, by the narrowest of majorities, used a distorted reading of the law to give an employer that discriminated a free pass, and to deny justice and back pay to a victim of pay discrimination.
This case potentially has implications for victims of other forms of employment discrimination - pay discrimination based on race, religion, national origin, age, or disability. We urge Congress to act quickly to ensure that no other workers suffer the same fate.
That this ruling was so close, 5 - 4, with both of President Bush's appointees ruling against Lilly Ledbetter, is one more reminder that America needs a President who will appoint, and a Senate that will confirm, only those justices and judges with a deep commitment to equal rights. Once again, this Court let women down. Every Senator who voted to confirm the justices who ruled against Lilly Ledbetter should examine his/her conscience and adopt a different standard for judicial nominees going forward."
The National Partnership for Women & Families is a non-profit, non-partisan advocacy group dedicated to promoting fairness in the workplace, access to quality health care and policies that help women and men meet the dual demands of work and family.