Pennsylvania Women Won’t Get Equal Pay Until 2072

pennsylvania coins

Yes, it’s true, Pennsylvania’s Equal Pay Act passed in 1963. So why is it that, in its recent “Status of Women in the States” report from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, our state earned a C+ in the category of Employment and Earnings? Why is it that the median annual earnings of men in 2013 were $12,000 higher than those of women? Why do women in Pennsylvania earn only 76 cents for every dollar a man earns? Why is it that I have to wait till I’m 103 before I live in a state where men and women get equal pay?

The problem, of course, is that most women don’t know they’re being paid less, and no one can sue for an affront they don’t know exists. If they do find out, their colleagues can get into trouble for violating corporate policies around wage secrecy, and they can be threatened with retaliation. And wage discrepancies can be justified by any number of criteria because the current Equal Pay Act’s standards are vague.
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Standing Room Only at Craig Drake’s Memorial Service

drake-400x400“He’s a character out of a Tom Wolfe story.” That’s how a friend of mine describes Craig Drake, who died on March 15th at age 79. The metaphor is apparently apt: One of Drake’s oldest friends, speaking of him at a packed memorial service yesterday at The Church of the Holy Trinity on Rittenhouse Square, also compared Drake’s life to a novel, with one important caveat: “It would all be true.”

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Is Jim Kenney the Face of New Philadelphia?

Photograph by Christopher Leaman

Photograph by Christopher Leaman

I thought there would be glad-handing. I thought there would be exuberant, sweaty-palmed high fives. I thought there would be clusters of well-wishers leaning in for brush-with-fame selfies. I had visions of Jim Kenney, 56, the mayoral candidate and former city councilman, in a slightly too tight Neumann-Goretti sweatshirt, smiling as he greeted supporters tromping up the metal rafters in Philadelphia University’s gymnasium.

This is what I imagined when Kenney invited me to join him for the girls’ Catholic League semifinals in mid-February. In fact, when we’d met a few weeks earlier at a campaign appearance in Fishtown, he’d said, “Liz! I hear we’re going to be dating!” Read more »

Ask Liz: (Comcast?) Cable and the 1948 Democratic National Convention

Photograph: Bettmann/Corbis/Associated Press

Political revelers at the 1948 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. Photograph: Bettmann/Corbis/Associated Press

I know Comcast’s David L. Cohen is senior adviser to the host committee for the Democratic National Convention to be held in Philly in 2016. Is it true Comcast also had something to do with the last presidential DNC held in Philadelphia? — Media-Minded in Center City

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Philippe Starck to Design Philly Hotel

Phillipe Starck | Photo: James Jennings

Philippe Starck in Philadelphia | Photo: James Jennings

Bonjour mes amis. We have news. Philippe Starck was in town today to talk about his role as exclusive interior designer for Carl Dranoff’s SLS Hotel project at Broad and Spruce. It’s not a total surprise as Starck has been the boutique hotel chain’s key collaborator since its founding. Still, the official announcement has a certain frisson about it.

Property editor Jim Jennings spoke to Starck and was able to get the following through the Gallic fog of his accent:

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Confession: I Wear Maternity Jeans Even Though I’m Not Pregnant

maternity jeans

Heaven: Maternity jeans on sale at the Gap.

I could have at least four different-sized human beings shop in my closet right now, as it is filled with pants ranging from size 0 to size 10. They don’t vary in waistline as much as you’d think because we’re talking about the women’s clothing industry, after all, and a size 6 at J.Crew is in no way similar to a size 6 at Talbot’s. It’s not as though I gain and lose 30 pounds every month. I do, however, gain and lose about eight pounds every month, and that is not insignificant when you’re trying to put an outfit together. (Oh, menopause! When will you arrive?)

Last month, after another morning spent trying on and then shedding pants that wouldn’t button like a waterlogged molting snake, I took my angry menstrual self to the Gap for new jeans. I had recently given a bunch of clothing to Goodwill, and forgotten to keep some big jeans for the fat half of the month. As I browsed the tidy shelves admiringly (I used to work at the Gap, and still remember the folding process as exquisitely satisfying), I thought, “If only they made expandable jeans that would work with me throughout the month, like with a big elastic waistband.” I started thinking I should invent them and become rich. I saw myself on QVC with impossibly terrific hair, chatting with Isaac Mizrahi about the planets, my manicure superb. Then I walked to the back of the store and oh my god there they were I already invented them. In the maternity section. Read more »

Cayman Naib’s Death Ruled a Suicide

The Delaware County Medical Examiner’s office has released its findings today of the autopsy of 13-year-old Cayman Naib, the eighth-grade Shipley student who went missing last Wednesday night. Naib was found yesterday near his family’s property, facedown in a creek bed, covered in snow. It appeared he might have fallen and hit his head after climbing over a wall, but he was also found with a firearm, complicating the forensic picture. Now the death has been attributed to a “single perforating gunshot wound to the head”; the autopsy clearly states that Cayman “shot self in head in an outdoor/wooded area.”

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Missing Newtown Square Eighth-Grader Found Dead


Cayman Naib, the eighth-grade boy who went missing from his Newtown Square home on Wednesday evening, has been found dead. The news was reported on the Facebook page dedicated to finding him. It reads:

It is with a heavy heart that we share news that the family has just learned through the search and rescue team and local law enforcement that Cayman has been found deceased. Please understand that the family is still processing and struggling with this most recent news but that they would like to thank all of the thousands of people over the last five days – friends, family, community, law enforcement, local, county, and federal, search and rescue, fire departments, the school communities, especially Shipley and Episcopal Academy, and even perfect strangers – who have come together to support the family to find Cayman. Read more »

New Information in the Search for Missing Newtown Square Teen Cayman Naib


A Facebook community page has been launched for 13-year-old Cayman Naib, who went missing around 6:30 on Wednesday night from his home in Newtown Square. He left wearing ski pants, a down jackets and hiking boots, but didn’t take his cell phone or wallet. The Facebook page says that his parents have reached out to his friends and are “reasonably convinced” he is not with them. They also note that he doesn’t seem to be using his email.

They do give an ostensible reason for his leaving the house abruptly: he left about a half-hour after his school — The Shipley School in Bryn Mawr — sent him an email about overdue homework. His parents write:

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