Ah, stars fell on Alabama and they gave us Lilly Ledbetter.
On January 29, 2009, President Obama signed his very first piece of legislation: the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Restoration Act. Named for the Alabama resident who discovered her employer was paying her less than men doing the same job, this law makes it easier for other women like her to effectively challenge unequal pay.
Lilly Ledbetter took her pay discrimination complaint all the way to the Supreme Court, which ruled in 2007 that claims like hers had to be filed within 180 days of an employer’s decision to pay a worker less—even if the worker didn’t learn about the unfair pay until much later, as was the case for Mrs. Ledbetter.
To make sure that people can effectively challenge unequal pay, the law President Obama signed shortly after taking office amended the Civil Rights Act of 1964 so that unfair pay complaints can be filed within 180 days of a discriminatory paycheck—and that 180 days resets after each paycheck is issued. (source)
Here in Alabama, we are especially proud of Mrs. Ledbetter and are thankful everyday for her strength, energy, courage, commitment, integrity, and passion. We look forward to hearing what she has to share when she speaks at the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte.