The City of Albuquerque filed a motion last week to try to prevent a class action lawsuit that alleges gender pay discrimination. About 600 women joined four original plaintiffs in 2020 to create a class action lawsuit to seek redress for alleged gender pay discrimination. The original four plaintiffs filed their suit in 2018. Related: ABQ faces class action suit over disparity in pay for women
The plaintiffs’ attorney, Alexandra Freedman Smith, said the pay inequity is so significant, that in some cases, the plaintiffs are alleging there is as much as a $7 an hour difference between what men are paid and what women are paid for the same job. Freedman Smith said some of the women are owed around $100,000 because of the pay differential.
The City of Albuquerque is using the state Inspection of Public Records Act to only its own end, according to closing arguments in the trial of a lawsuit alleging the city violated the law. Ahmad Assed, the attorney for Munah Green, contends in written arguments submitted this week that under the city’s interpretation, “IPRA becomes meaningless and subject to the pleasure and whim of governmental power.”
“Instead of IPRA being a public check and balance, or a statutory tool by which the public can extract the greatest possible information about governmental actions, IPRA can be thwarted, eviscerated and otherwise rendered meaningless by two words: ‘on-going investigation,’” Assed writes. Green is the mother of Jaquise Lewis, the 17-year-old who died from gunshots in the March shooting at Los Altos Skate Park. The shooting left six others wounded, including one who was paralyzed. Albuquerque police have said that Lewis had a gun, fired at people that night and was killed in self defense.
If someone commits a crime in New Mexico, state law says that law enforcement must investigate it. But the Albuquerque city attorney’s office says that doesn’t mean the investigation has to be thorough. This interpretation of state law coming after an accident that left two people with permanent brain damage has local attorney Antonia Roybal-Mack up in arms.
“What they’re saying is if they sit there and eat Cheetos, as long as they show up, that’s all they have to do,” she said. Roybal-Mack represents six family members who were in a van on the evening of June 7, 2012 that T-boned a car that ran a red light. The front passenger in the van, Betty Melendez, has testified that she has no memory of her life before the accident.