Pay Privacy in Comparative Prospect
15 Pages Posted: 21 Aug 2018
Date Written: July 9, 2018
Five states and several cities, Philadelphia most prominently, have prohibited employers from asking applicants for their current rate of pay. These laws rest on the rationale that as women tend to be paid less than men the use of current pay rates in hiring can perpetuate sex discrimination, and so the information ought not be a subject of inquiry. That provision in the Philadelphia Ordinance has been enjoined as violative of free commercial speech. This short essay, taken from a lecture given at the Università digli Studi Suor Orsola Benincasa in Naples, Italy, takes the issue up in the context of comparative law using Japan and Germany to compare with the U.S. It looks at the issue through three categories of domestic legal concern: entrepreneurial liberty (Japan), labor market outcome (U.S.), and individual privacy (Germany).
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