New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) on Wednesday signed legislation aimed at eliminating the gender wage gap at a parade for the U.S. women’s soccer team, which has helped put a spotlight on the issue.
The bill requires “equal pay for substantially similar work” and prohibits pay differentials based on an individual’s gender identity, race, sexual orientation or other protected class.
According to a statement from Cuomo’s office, the bill will also ban prospective employees about their salary history.
“You should get paid the same amount whatever the job is,” Cuomo said at a press conference. “These are women’s soccer players. They play the same game that the men’s soccer players play. By the way, they play it better.”
“New Yorkers – all 19 million – we stand united: Equal rights, men, women,” he added. “We’re going to make it a legal reality in the State of New York.”
Cuomo was seen with others in the crowd chanting “equal pay” during the parade which celebrated the soccer team’s second sequential World Cup victory.
The players on the women’s national team have been vocal advocates of equal pay. In March, they filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Soccer Federation, accusing it of “institutionalized gender discrimination” including inequity in pay, practice time, practice locations, medical treatment, coaching and travel. The two sides reportedly reached a tentative deal last month.