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Hawaii Equal Pay/Comparable Worth: What you need to know

Hawaii's wage and hour law prohibits public and private employers from discriminating in the payment of wages on the basis of race, religion, or sex (HI Rev. Stat. Sec. 387-4). A difference in wages may be paid when it results from any of the following:
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• A seniority system
• Length of service
• Substantial difference in duties or services performed
• Difference in the shift or time of day worked, or hours of work
An employer who is paying a wage rate differential in violation of the law is prohibited from reducing the wage rate of any employee in order to comply with its provisions. Also, under the law, an employee is prohibited from waiving his or her rights to equal pay.
The Hawaii Fair Employment Practice Law expressly prohibits employers from discriminating in compensation on the basis of sex for equal work on jobs that require equal skill, effort, and responsibility, and that are performed under similar working conditions (HI Rev. Stat. Sec. 378-2.3 ). Payment differentials are not unlawful if they are based on one of the following factors:
• A seniority system,
• A merit system,
• A system that measures earnings by quantity or quality of production,
• A bona fide occupational qualification, or
• Any other permissible factor other than sex.
The Law also prohibits pay discrimination on the basis of genetic information, race, sex, sexual orientation, age, religion, color, ancestry, disability, marital status, National Guard obligation, arrest and court record, domestic or sexual violence victim status, or credit history or report (HI Rev. Stat. Sec. 378-1 et seq.).
Under the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009, the federal fair employment laws were amended so that each paycheck ...

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