Wage disparities between genders can be found in all types of industries. Certain fields, such as technology, the problem is much more widespread.
In recent years, several companies in the Silicon Valley, such as Microsoft, Facebook and Oracle, have been thrust in the spotlight for wage gap issues. And recently, Google has been under investigation by the Department of Labor (DOL) for gender pay discrimination.
As a federal contractor, Google is required to provide the DOL with access to its records and employee information to ensure compliance with federal equal opportunity laws. In this investigation, the DOL found evidence of extreme gender pay discrimination. They filed a lawsuit against Google this past January.
"We found systemic compensation disparities against women pretty much across the entire workforce," said Janette Wipper, a DOL regional director.
Janet Herold, regional solicitor for the DOL, said: "The government’s analysis at this point indicates that discrimination against women in Google is quite extreme, even in this industry."
Google claims it does not have a gender pay gap, despite evidence found by the DOL that suggests otherwise. The company also has refused to hand over job and salary history, along with names and contact information, for its employees, claiming the DOL's request violates employee privacy rights and the company's fourth amendment rights against unreasonable searches.
The DOL has asked the federal court to cancel Google's government contracts and block them from future business if they do not comply with the audit request. The court's decision is still pending.