Background of The Case
In 1979 Lilly Ledbetter, the plaintiff, began work at the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company in its Gadsden, Alabama location, a union plant. She started with the same pay as male employees, but by retirement, she was earning $3,727 per month compared to 15 men who earned from $4,286 per month (lowest paid man) to $5,236 per month (highest paid man). During her years at the factory as a salaried worker, raises were given and denied based partly on evaluations and recommendations regarding worker performance. From 1979-1981 Ledbetter received a series of negative evaluations, which she later claimed were discriminatory. Although her subsequent evaluations were good, in part as a result of those early negative evaluations, her pay never reached the level of similar male employees. All merit increases had to be substantiated by a formal evaluation. In March 1998, Ledbetter inquired into the possible sexual discrimination of the Goodyear Tire Company. In July she filed formal charges with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. In November 1998, after early retirement, Ledbetter sued claiming pay discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Equal Pay Act of 1963. The Supreme Court did not rule on whether this was discrimination, just the statute of limitations to sue.
Read more about this topic: Ledbetter V. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co.
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