Watch CBS News

California's Women Lawmakers Introduce Equal Pay Legislation

LOS ANGELES ( — Members of the California Legislative Women's Caucus introduced a new bill Tuesday to ensure fair pay for comparable work, no matter the gender of the worker.

Besides ensuring fair pay for comparable work, the California Fair Pay Act would protect women from retaliation if they discuss pay discrepancies based on gender with their boss.

"We know that janitors, because they tend to be male occupations, tend to get paid more than that housekeeper," Sen. Hannah Beth-Jackson (D-Santa Barbara) said. "The question becomes, is that work more valuable? And if you look at the differences between that work, the answer is likely to be no, it isn't more valuable."

The call for equal pay appears to be getting louder, as Tuesday's announcement comes two days after actress Patricia Arquette nearly stole the show at the Academy Awards Sunday with her rousing speech, calling for equal rights and pay for women.

RELATED: Patricia Arquette Steals Oscars With Rousing Speech Calling For Wage Equality In Hollywood, Nation

"To every woman who gave birth to every taxpayer and citizen in this nation, we have fought for everybody else's equal rights. It's our time to have wage equality once and for all, and equal rights for women in the United States of America," Arquette said, after accepting her award for Best Supporting Actress for the film "Boyhood."

The California Legislative Women's Caucus said the Equal Rights Advocates found a woman in 2013 working full-time made a median 84 cents to every dollar a man earned. The gap is even greater for women of color – Latinas in California make only 44 cents for every dollar a white man makes, the most significant Latina wage gap in the nation.

RELATED: Social Media Abuzz After Patricia Arquette Delivers Oscars Speech On Wage Equality

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.