Friday, February 8, 2008

Helping Women Achieve Financial Security

How can I improve my pay, working conditions and benefits like flextime and health insurance?

Collective bargaining(union) resources:

Education Minnesota
Statewide organization for teachers and related professions.

Minneapolis Federation of Teachers
Agent for teachers of Minneapolis Special School District #1.

Minnesota Nurses Association
Represents nurses and nursing assistants in 13 districts statewide.

Service Employees International Union
Statewide and local representation for hotel, restaurant, and other service workers.

Third District Nurses
A grassroots arm of MN Nurses Association. Professional development opportunities and other needs of all registered nurses within Anoka, Carver, Hennepin and Scott counties of Minnesota.

What can I do if I think I’m being discriminated against?

American Association of University Women
AAUW is the largest funder of sex discrimination lawsuits in the world. There are 37 AAUW branches in Minnesota.

Les Soeurs
Support and information specific to discrimination in employment. Statewide.

Pay Equity Coalition of Minnesota
Information on enforcement of the State Government Pay Equity Act of 1982 and the Local Government Pay Equity Act of 1984. Statewide.

Workplace Justice
General information on workplace rights and responsibilities, support group, and problem-solving for workplace difficulties such as discrimination, harassment, and other forms of abuse. Twin Cities metro area.

Educate Yourself

1. Check out to determine if you are being paid unfairly.

2. Read Getting Even by Evelyn Murphy and start a wage club.

3. See if your salary is near the median range for your occupation at

Workplace Justice meets on the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month (10am-12pm 550 Rice St, Saint Paul). Share your pay discrimination stories with other women in this self-help support group. Your anonymity will be guaranteed. Call 952-996-9291 for more info.

Risk taking, communication skills, women's labor market choices, Minnesota's pay equity laws and how people played together when they were young are all topics discussed in the book "Earn More, Move Up". Request your copy at

Ways You Can Help Close the Wage Gap

1. Send donations to the Pay Equity Coalition to:
550 Rise St., Saint Paul, MN 55103

2. The coalition is looking for a private sector business to act as the subject of a pay equity analysis. The purpose of the study is to determine if the effectiveness of the pay equity tools used by MN public sector employees is transferable to private sector businesses. The identity of the business participating in the study will be anonymous. Please send any business subject suggestions to

3. Ask candidates in your area if they are familiar with the wage gap between men and women? Do they support legislation, such as Minnesota's Local Government Pay Equity Act to ensure women are paid fairly?

4. Check out the Fair Pay Act , The Paycheck Fairness Act, the Fair Pay Restoration Act and make sure your elected officials in Washington support them.