In a lawsuit against the University of Texas, law Professor Linda Mullenix argues she was intentionally paid less due to her gender and in retaliation for complaints she previously made about a wage gap between men and women at the school, the Austin American-Statesman reported.
Although she has taught law at UT since 1991, Mullenix said in a federal complaint filed Thursday that her male colleagues in the law school make more with less seniority.
She also alleges she has been denied seats on prestigious committees at the school, the newspaper reported.
“Most disturbingly, because of Professor Mullenix’s opposition to UT Law’s unequal pay practices, she has been made a pariah by the administration. New professors are told to stay away from her and that she is ‘poison,’ ” the lawsuit said.
That document points to the $10,000 pay increase that Professor Robert Bone received for the 2018-19 school year. Mullenix got a pay bump of only $1,500, despite teaching similar courses, receiving higher student ratings and having taught for a decade longer, the lawsuit says.
“The reason Professor Mullenix is paid less for equal work is because of her sex and prior reports of equal pay violations,” the lawsuit states.
Mullenix says in the suit that she first became aware of the pay gap in 2010, but then-dean Lawrence Sager refused to negotiate an adjustment to her salary and later threatened that she would “never be able to work anywhere again” if she sued, the Statesman reported.
Mullenix settled an Equal Pay Act claim against UT in 2011, getting a $20,000 raise and $250,000 settlement. She says in the suit that the school illegally structured the settlement so she would receive $25,000 additions to her salary every year for 10 years, which “falsely inflated” her salary.
The Texas Tribune’s government salary explorer shows that Bone will make total compensation of $387,401 during the 2019-20 school year, while Mullenix will make $337,418.