The District Court of Jerusalem. .
(photo credit: JERUSALEM MUNICIPALITY)
The National Labor Court on Monday issued a ruling that requires the Jerusalem Municipality to pay two female employees the same as their male counterparts.
Galit Keidar and Daphna Ilouz claimed that during their employment in the municipality’s sanitation department they received less pay than males doing the same job.
According to the court, the women worked in the same office along with two other women and two men who all completed the same tasks.
The men were considered part of the “garage and transport workers” at the municipality and received additional salary supplements, while the women were considered “management division employees” and as such, received significantly lower salary supplements than their male counterparts.
Keidar and Ilouz initially sued the municipality in a regional court to equalize their pay and benefits to that of their male colleagues, in accordance with the Equal Pay Act of 1996, as well as to receive compensation for gender discrimination under the Equal Employment Opportunities Law of 1988.
The regional court rejected their claim, and as such, the women filed an appeal with the National Labor Court.
The National Court in turn ruled in favor of the two appellants, and ruled that they were entitled to a full comparison of wages, similar to those of their male counterparts.
The court noted in its decision that the Equal Pay Act was “designed to combat head-on the reality where wage gaps between women and men are continuing, widespread, consistent and meaningful.”
The decision further clarified that the mere distribution into groups of female and male workers within the same department “clearly reflects that structural discrimination that the Equal Payment Act was designed to eradicate.”
In addition, the court ruled that the appellants were in fact discriminated against because of their gender and were entitled to compensation from the municipality for damages caused to them as a result – some NIS 75,000.
The municipality was also ordered to pay the court costs of the appeal proceedings totaling some NIS 25,000 per appellant.