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County of Santa Clara Celebrates Recognition of Equal Pay Advocacy Efforts

SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CALIF.The County of Santa Clara is celebrating an award granted to the Bay Area Equal Pay Collaborative by the Equal Rights Advocates in San Francisco earlier this month. The Bay Area Equal Pay Collaborative, an organization the County’s Office of Women’s Policy founded in 2012 in partnership with other Bay Area organizations, received the Gender Justice Award for its efforts to provide education and advocacy on the issue of Equal Pay, and its work to address the needs of vulnerable workers.  The award ceremony drew nearly 800 participants from across the Bay Area.
 “I am pleased to see that the hard work of the Bay Area Equal Pay Collaborative has not gone unnoticed,” said Supervisor Ken Yeager, President, County of Santa Clara Board of Supervisors.  “I commend the Office of Women’s Policy for its leadership role in advocating for vulnerable workers, particularly youth workers, undocumented workers, and older workers.” 
The award acknowledges the efforts of the Collaborative’s partnering organizations: The County of Santa Clara Office of Women’s Policy, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, EEOC, Department of Labor (Women’s Bureau, Wage and Hour Division, and the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs), The Coalition for Equal Pay, and The Katherine and George Alexander Law Center – Worker Rights Programs.  The Collaborative provides education and advocacy on the issue of equal pay in the workplace.
This year, the Collaborative conducted workshops for vulnerable workers, employers and college students throughout the Bay Area; sponsored an Equal Pay Cookie Project, a high school curriculum
that reached over 2,000 students this year across Santa Clara County; and began conducting Wage Negotiation Training. The first training drew approximately 60 students at San Jose State University and was presented in collaboration with the American Association of University Women, AAUW San Jose.
“We applaud the combined accomplishments of this young but very dynamic collaborative,” said Noreen Farrell, Executive Director of Equal Rights Advocate.  “This recognition highlights the commitment of the members of the Bay Area Equal Pay Collaborative to defending the dignity of women in the work place who feel intimidated to speak up for themselves or their peers when it comes to protecting their rights.”   
“Raising awareness and educating our community is not an option, but a shared responsibility,” added Esther Peralez-Dieckmann, Director of the County of Santa Clara Office of Women’s Policy, who received the award on behalf of the Collaborative.   “The Gender Justice Award recognizes our efforts to advocate for vulnerable workers who do not have a voice, and encourages partnerships with the public, private and non-governmental sectors to address equal pay and other worker rights.”
Media Contact: Gwendolyn Mitchell/Marina Hinestrosa, Office of Public Affairs (408) 299-5119; Esther Peralez-Dieckmann, Office of Women’s Policy (408) 299-5142;
Posted: June 25, 2013