Nine Accused of Gender-Pricing Violations

Ian P. Murphy |

SANTA MONICA, Calif. — The city of Santa Monica filed suit against nine operators last week, accusing them of violating California’s gender-pricing law after conducting a sting that visited 48 stores.
City officials said they found discrepancies between what a man and woman were charged at the stores during the sting, in violation of California’s 1996 law. “There is a difference between what men and women are charged,” said Paula Rockenstein, a spokesperson for the city attorney’s office.
The law also requires drycleaners and hair salons to post a pricelist of 15 common services, furnish a pricelist at request and post a large sign informing customers of the antidiscrimination policy. Although the city had issued letters reminding 139 businessses of the law in February 2007, none of 29 businesses surveyed at random had achieved compliance two months later.
More letters ensued, until Santa Monica finally issued $2,500 fines to encourage compliance. “This lawsuit is to make sure that all businesses follow the law,” says Deputy City Attorney Adam Radinsky. “Female customers shouldn’t have to wonder if they’re getting fair pricing when they go to the cleaners or to the hair salon.”

About the author

Ian P. Murphy

Freelance Writer

Ian P. Murphy is a freelance writer based in Chicago, and was the editor of American Drycleaner from 1999 to 2011.


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