EEOC Sues Verona Area School District for Pay Discrimination | United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)

Female special education teachers and school psychologists are paid less than their male colleagues, federal agency fee

CHICAGO — The Verona Area School District (VASD), which serves Verona and parts of Fitchburg and Madison, Wisconsin, violated federal law by paying female special education teachers and a school psychologist lower wages than male employees doing the same job, the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a lawsuit she filed today.

According to the EEOC lawsuit, since the 2019-20 school year, VASD has paid nine female specialist teachers salaries lower than those of a specialist teacher. All nine have comparable (or better) experience than their male colleague, but have earned between $3,000 and $17,000 less than him. The EEOC also alleged that a female school psychologist was paid less than a male school psychologist, earning at least $16,000 less per year than since the 2017-18 school year.

Such alleged conduct violates the Equal Pay Act (EPA), which prohibits discrimination based on sex. The EEOC filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin (EEOC v. Verona Area School District, Case #3: 22-cv-00039) after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process. The EEOC’s litigation effort will be led by trial attorneys Ann Henry and Elizabeth Banaszak and supervising trial attorney Justin Mulaire.

“Addressing wage discrimination remains a priority for the EEOC,” said Julianne Bowman, district manager of the EEOC’s Chicago office. “Nearly 60 years after the Equal Pay Act was enacted, we continue to see that there is still work to be done to achieve the Act’s mandate of equal pay for equal work.”

Gregory Gochanour, regional attorney for the Chicago District Office of the EEOC, added: “For female employees to have the same or more experience and be paid so much less than their male colleagues to do the same work is unfair and illegal. , and that’s why we’ve sued to right this wrong.

The EEOC is seeking back wages, damages, the elimination of wage disparities, and other injunctive relief to correct and prevent future wage discrimination.

For more information on equal pay and pay discrimination, please see https://www.eeoc.gov/equal-paycompensation-discrimination.

The Chicago District Office of the EEOC is responsible for handling employment discrimination charges, administrative enforcement, and the conduct of agency litigation in Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and North and South Dakota, with regional offices in Milwaukee and Minneapolis.

The EEOC advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting discrimination in employment. More information is available at www.eeoc.gov.

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