Vermont Equal Pay Compact

Logo for our compact project


With your help, we can cultivate a more equitable workforce and a prosperous economy where all talent is valued.  CLICK BELOW TO SIGN UP!
                  Click here to sign up

LEADERS FOR PAY EQUITY & EQUAL PAY TOOLKITLeaders for Equity & Equal Pay Toolkit

The Leaders for Equity and Equal Pay Toolkit is a free resource to empower small to mid-size employers (any organization with under 400 employees) with the tools to conduct in-house, DIY gender and racial pay equity reviews. The Toolkit includes the excel-based Equity Management Tool and a companion Pay Equity Playbook. Also included is an interactive Compensation Philosophy Worksheet, a Pay Equity Plan Template, and a Performance Rubric. These tools were created by Sadowski Consulting Services in partnership with the Change The Story VT initiative of the Vermont Women's Fund, the Vermont Commission on Women, and Vermont Works for Women to fast-track women's economic well-being in Vermont.

Download the toolkit from our Change The Story Vt partner, Vermont Women's Fund

Toolkit FAQs

Equal Pay Compact In the News: Can the U.S. close a gender pay gap widened by the pandemic? (via NewsNation | Reporter Mary Hall, 5/16/22)
"Simultaneously, the initiative created voluntary programs, like mentorships for businesses to teach each other on how to create better workplaces. They could also join a pledge to pay workers equally called the Vermont Equal Pay Compact, which 200 businesses have signed to date.  "'Trying to get everybody on the same page is sometimes challenging,' said Cary Brown, executive director of the Vermont Commission on Women, a non-partisan government agency involved in the effort. 'But these are all things that can have kind of the indirect ripple effects on the amount of money that women are earning.'”


• Our organization/business already does a lot around pay equity; OR, Our organization has never considered pay equity before.  Is this initiative for my business?
YES!  All Vermont employers interested in helping to close the gender wage gap in Vermont are encouraged to participate, regardless of their previous experience with gender/pay equity.

• How much does it cost?
It is FREE to sign on to the Equal Pay Compact.

• Who else has signed on?
See the full list to the right of this screen.  Click through to visit their business website.  It's over 194 employers so far! Including businesses large and small from all over Vermont and from a wide variety of industries.

• Will businesses be "graded" on performance?
NO.  The Vermont Commission on Women does not grade employers on their equity performance.  Staff are available to consult with employers about what strategies would work best for them, and what role they could play to improve pay equity in their organization, in their industry, and across Vermont as a whole.

• Who should sign on to the Vermont Equal Pay Compact?
All Vermont employers interested in helping to close the gender wage gap are encouraged to participate, regardless of their previous experience with gender/pay equity.

    - Our organization already pays all of our employees equally, is this initiative for us?
YES! Even if no wage gap exists at your business there are still plenty of ways for your organization to help close the wage gap in Vermont. Plus, you can stand in solidarity with all the other signers of the Compact!

     - My organization has never considered gender/pay equity before, is this initiative for us?
YES!  The Vermont Commission on Women can help you examine ways to support working women at your organization and beyond, and can help address any issues that may exist.

    - I am a self-employed person. Can I sign on to the Compact?
YES! For similar reasons outlined above, we would love to have you sign on!

• What do employers get for signing on?
RECOGNITION AND SUPPORT.  We offer a list of strategies to consider and resources to inform employers about the wage gap.  Every signer receives a static-cling decal in the mail to display in their business or organization’s window, and their business name and website link will appear on the list Compact signers to the right of this screen.  We feature signers on our social media platforms and in our monthly e-newsletter.

• How are employers held accountable once they sign on?
Staff will be in touch with your organization/business periodically to check in about progress towards closing the wage gap.  There are no reports or tests - only the offer of support and assistance to keep this initiative moving forward!

• I'm not a decision maker for my organization– how else can I support the Equal Pay Compact?
HELP US SPREAD THE WORD! Introduce us to your employer and let them know why working for a business that supports working women is important to you. Invite us to your networking event and post about the Equal Pay Compact on social media!

• What other benefits are there to signing on?
Your business or organization will be able to attract and retain the highest level of talent in Vermont by cultivating an equitable workforce.  The Compact recognizes that employer commitment is essential to closing the wage gap in Vermont. In fact, employer interventions are among the most effective remedies to the wage gap and can contribute to lasting, positive change in the workplace.

The Vermont Equal Pay Compact is a powerful way to recognize the loss our economy suffers when:
- Vermont women earn only 83% of what Vermont men earn – resulting in millions of dollars of lost income that is not going into our economy
- Vermont women are underrepresented in the jobs that pay the most, and overrepresented in the lowest-paying jobs
Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) occupations, and the opportunities they bring, are dominated by men
- There is tremendous untapped potential in Vermont women who don’t see opportunities or who aren’t able to access them, and Vermont girls who don’t get the education they need to enter the highest-paying professions

• What's a best next step after signing on?
Download the new toolkit from our partnership initiative Change The Story Vermont.

                  Click here to sign up



Review this list of strategies that have been shown to be effective. Draw from it and other resources to determine the most suitable and relevant steps for your workplace. 
                              a list of ways businesses can help eliminate wage gap 


Explore these tools and resources about the wage gap and issues related to equal pay. 
                              Click here for list of tools & resources 

 Questions? Concerns?  Contact us.





Graphic celebrating 195 signers of our equal pay compact



Although VCW presented this event the very week the COVID-19 pandemic emergency order went into place, both new and current Compact signers still joined us the morning of Thursday, March 19th 2020 for this webinar. How's that for dedication to ending the gender wage gap!  Watch this webinar here!


Vermont employers learned more and signed on to the Compact at the Vermont Chamber Business and Industry Expo  and Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility's (VBSR) Conference, and the Vermont Development Conference.  Our very special thanks to Main Street Landing for sharing an exhibitor table at VBSR's spring conference and at the Vermont Chamber Business and Industry Expo!



Thank you signers, for your commitment to ending the gender wage gap in our state!

Celebrating 150 signers!



Thanks to all who attended our Brattleboro Equal Pay Compact Networking & Exchange event.  We loved learning and listening to our Signers!  Read more about the event: Equal Pay Compact Sees Rapid Expansion  (from VTDigger)

VCW Commissioner Kerry Secrest, VCW Director Cary Brown, DOL Women's Bureau Regional Director Jackie Cooke at Brattleboro Compact event
At our Brattleboro Compact event:  (l to R) VCW Commissioner Kerry Secrest, VCW Director Cary Brown, and Federal DOL Women's Bureau Regional Director Jackie Cooke


Celebrating 100th Sginer to Equal Pay Compact!!


The Vermont Commission on Women’s Equal Pay Compact, a voluntary online pledge enabling Vermont-based employers to learn more about and to indicate a commitment to closing the gender wage gap, just celebrated an important milestone: the 100th employer to sign on.

“This project launched on Equal Pay Day 2015 to inform employers about practical steps they can take to eliminate the wage gap in their business and across Vermont.”  says Cary Brown, Vermont Commission on Women’s Executive Director.  “Legislation alone can’t fix this: employers are the key.  We provide consultation and a list of strategies employers can draw on, anything from quick and easy fixes, like enlisting diverse evaluators in the hiring process, to more complex ones, like creating flex time, job sharing, and telecommuting programs. The idea is to inspire positive change in employer practices.”

Seth Leonard, the Mayor of the City of Winooski, explains why they signed on to the Equal Pay Compact. "A commitment to equal pay policies makes us more competitive, allowing us to recruit and retain qualified people to government work. This is a process that requires a long-term commitment to both creating and maintaining a just compensation system. We are pleased to join in the Compact and work toward our goal of recognizing and rewarding all of our employees."

Kelly Walsh, advisor and recruiter to the project, continues.  “Vermont is chock full of socially responsible employers working hard to do all the right things for their employees, and this is a great way to spotlight and acknowledge those businesses.   For employers who want to attract and retain female employees, being listed on the Vermont Equal Pay Compact’s site is a public expression of support.”

The Equal Pay Compact is one way in which the Vermont Commission on Women works as a partner in Change The Story Vermont, along with Vermont Works for Women and the Vermont Women’s Fund. Change The Story is an initiative to align policy, program, and philanthropy to significantly improve women’s economic status in our state. For more information and to sign up for the Compact, please visit