BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

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                                           THIRD READING

Bill No:  AB 1100
Author:   Speier (D)
Amended:  8/31/95 in Senate
Vote:     21

AYES:  Ayala, Craven, Greene, Rosenthal, Boatwright
NOES:  Kelley
NOT VOTING:  Killea, O'Connell, Johannessen

AYES:  Campbell, Lockyer, Mello, O'Connell, Petris, Solis,  
NOT VOTING:  Wright, Leslie

 ASSEMBLY FLOOR:   41-35, 6/2/95 - See last page for vote

SUBJECT:    Civil rights:  gender-based discrimination

 SOURCE:     Author

DIGEST:    This bill prohibits gender-based discrimination  
in the pricing of services.

 ANALYSIS:    Existing law prohibits a business  
establishment from discriminating against a person because  
of the sex of the person, and specifies the remedies for a  
violation of this provision.  Specifically, existing law:

1. Known as the Unruh Civil Rights Act (UCRA), states that  
   all persons within the jurisdiction of the state are  


                                                     AB 1100

   entitled to the full and equal accommodations,  
   advantages, facilities, privileges and services in all  
   business establishments, regardless of sex, race, color,  
   religion, ancestry, national origin or disability.

2. Provides for remedies (e.g., actual damages, punitive  
   damages, attorney fees and injunctive relief) for  
   violations of the UCRA which may be sought through the  
   filing of a civil action by the Attorney General, a  
   district attorney, city attorney or any aggrieved person  
   against anyone who denies, or aids, or incites a denial  
   of rights.

This bill:

1. Known as the Gender Tax Repeal Act of 1995, provides  
   that no business establishment may discriminate, with  
   respect to the price charged for services of a similar  
   or like kind, because of the person's gender.  Insurance  
   rating practices and health service plans are  
   specifically excluded from the prohibitions against  
   discrimination in this bill.

2. Provides limited remedies (as prescribed in current law)  
   for violations of the provisions of the act, which may  
   be sought through filing a civil suit wherein actual  
   damages and attorney fees may be awarded.


The Assembly Committee on Consumer Protection, Governmental  
Efficiency and Economic Development held an interim hearing  
in 1994 on "Gender Discrimination in the Pricing and  
Availability of Products and Services."  According to the  
author, data collected in conjunction with that hearing  
documents that adult women effectively pay a gender tax  
which costs each woman approximately $1,351 annually, or  
about $15 billion for all women in California.  The gender  
tax is the additional amount women pay for similar goods  
and services due to gender-based discrimination in pricing.

According to the Assembly policy committee analysis,  
gender-based discrimination in pricing has been documented  
in the following books, studies and reports:  "Gender-Based  


                                                     AB 1100

Discrimination in the Laundry Business," (Public Law  
Research Institute, 1987); "Gypped by Gender," (NYC  
Department of Consumer Affairs, 1992); "Why Women Pay  
More," (Center for Study of Responsive Law, 1993); "A  
Survey of Haircuts & Laundry Services in California,"  
(Assembly Office of Research [AOR], 1994), which found that  
women in California pay on the average $5 more for a  
haircut and $1.71 more to have a shirt laundered.  The AOR  
survey also found that 64 percent of those establishments  
surveyed in five major California cities charged more to  
launder a woman's white cotton shirt than a man's.

According to the Senate Business and Professions Committee,  
while it could be argued that the UCRA already prohibits  
gender-based price discrimination, the only published  
California case which relies on the UCRA to disallow price  
discrimination does so in the narrow context of special  
discounts for "Ladies Night" at a bar, and "Ladies Day" at  
a car wash.  In 1905, Section 51 of the Civil Code stated  
that all "citizens" were entitled to full and equal  
accommodations and privileges at most businesses.  Section  
51 was expanded to cover public conveyances in 1919, and  
refreshment stands in 1923.  In 1959, race, color,  
religion, ancestry and national origin were specified as  
protected classes; additionally, the scope of services  
included within the law was expanded to cover "all business  
establishments of every kind whatsoever."  "Citizen" was  
replaced by "person" in 1961.  In 1974, UCRA prohibitions  
against discrimination were extended to include gender, and  
in 1992 disabilities.  In general, as particular types of  
discrimination were recognized as unjust, they were  
disallowed through statute.

 Prior Legislation

AB 2418 (Speier, 1994) would have prohibited gender  
discrimination in pricing of goods and services, but was  
vetoed.  The Governor's objections to AB 2418 have been  
addressed in this bill, which now (1) only applies to  
services, not products; (2) specifically allows for  
differences in prices based on differences in services  
provided; and (3) amends the Civil Code, instead of the  
Business and Professions Code.



                                                     AB 1100

AB 2418 passed the Senate 21-13 (Noes:  Beverly, Hurtt,  
Johannessen, Kelley, Leonard, Leslie, Lewis, Maddy, Peace,  
Rogers, Russell, Wright, Wyman).

SB 1288 (Calderon, Chapter 535, Statutes of 1994) directs  
the Department of Consumer Affairs to send notices to  
cosmetologists regarding what constitutes illegal pricing  

 FISCAL EFFECT:   Appropriation:  No   Fiscal Com.:  No    
Local:  No




                                                     AB 1100

SUPPORT:   (Verified 8/31/95)

American Association of University Women 
California Cosmetology Association 
California Fabricare Institute 
California Business and Professional Women 
California Nurses Association 
Consumers Union
Equal Rights Advocates
Lambda Letters Project
Older Women's League
Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles 
Life AIDS Lobby

 ARGUMENTS IN SUPPORT:    According to the author's office,  
existing law does not sufficiently protect individuals from  
gender-based price discrimination.  This bill would  
prohibit gender-based discrimination in the pricing of  
services.  According to the author, such discrimination in  
pricing commonly occurs in the sale of services related to  
haircuts, laundry, dry cleaning and alterations.  The  
author states that Washington DC  has a similar law and  
that Florida is considering one.

AYES:  Alpert, Archie-Hudson, Baca, Bates, Bowen, V. Brown,  
  Burton, Bustamante, Caldera, Campbell, Cannella, Cortese,  
  Cunneen, Davis, Ducheny, Figueroa, Friedman, Gallegos,  
  Hannigan, Hauser, Isenberg, Katz, Knox, Kuehl, Lee,  
  Machado, Martinez, Mazzoni, McDonald, McPherson, K.  
  Murray, W. Murray, Napolitano, Sher, Speier, Sweeney,  
  Tucker, Vasconcellos, Villaraigosa, Woods, W. Brown
NOES:  Aguiar, Alby, Allen, Baldwin, Battin, Boland,  
  Bordonaro, Bowler, Brewer, Brulte, Conroy, Firestone,  
  Frusetta, Goldsmith, Granlund, Harvey, Hawkins, Hoge,  
  Kaloogian, Knight, Knowles, Kuykendall, Miller,  
  Morrissey, Morrow, Olberg, Poochigian, Pringle, Rainey,  
  Richter, Rogan, Setencich, Takasugi, Thompson, Weggeland
NOT VOTING:  Escutia, House



CP:ctl  8/31/95  Senate Floor Analyses
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