COMP NEWS – Federal employees need a sizable pay bump next year to begin closing the pay gap between the public and private sectors. Federal employees earn around 27.5% less on average than their peers in the public sector.

Federal employees earn 27.5% less on average than they would doing the same jobs in the private sector – and that situation has been getting worse for years. That’s why AFGE supports legislation introduced last week that would help close the pay gap between the federal and private sectors by providing federal employees with a 7.4% pay raise next year. 

The Federal Adjustment of Income Rates Act, or FAIR Act, was introduced by Representative Gerry Connolly of Virginia and Senator Brian Schatz of Hawaii.

“The government will never be able to dig itself out of this hole without meaningful pay raises that not only keep pace with rising costs of living but begin to narrow the pay gap,” said AFGE National President Everett Kelley. 

Congress in 1990 passed the Federal Employees Pay Comparability Act (FEPCA) to close the pay gap between federal workers and their non-federal counterparts. Government workers should be paid about the same as those doing similar work locally in the private sector.

But successive administrations and Congresses have failed to adhere to the principle, causing federal workers’ pay to lag behind what their counterparts are paid in the private sector and state and local government. As a result, today’s pay gap is 27.5%, higher than 25% when FEPCA was created.

To read more about the pay gap between the private and public sectors, click here.

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