Woman talking(l+r), Employee Handbook(c)

Vitalii Vodolazskyi/Shutterstock @kaylin_lavena/Tiktok (Licensed)

‘This why they don’t want you discussing pay w/ your co workers’: Black woman confronts HR after finding out co-worker with same job makes $3 more

'I thought this was a skit because the HR person sounds exactly like corporate Erin.'


Tiffanie Drayton


Posted on Feb 20, 2024   Updated on Feb 20, 2024, 8:49 am CST

One woman discovered her co-worker earned $3 more per hour for doing the same job and decided to confront HR about it on Valentine’s Day.

In a viral TikTok video that has amassed 208,000 views and over 16,200 likes, Kaylin Lavena (@kaylinlavena) captured the moment she confronted a Human Resources representative at her job about the pay difference.

“Raise your hand if your meeting with HR today, on Valentine’s Day, during Black History Month, to discuss why there is a $3 pay different between you and your co-worker who has the same title as you,” Kaylin began in the clip before raising her hand.

Then the conversation between her and HR began.

“What is the actual reason that he’s being paid $3 more for the same role?” she asked.

“I completely understand why you are upset,” the HR representative responded before offering up a response.

However, the explanation for the pay discrepancy did not sit well with the worker.

“When I looked into this, I want to tell you that the discrepancy doesn’t have anything to do with any sort of protected characteristic like gender or race or anything like that,” the woman said. Instead, she blamed the difference in pay on the fact that the company began recruiting workers with less experience later on in the hiring process.

“But you guys didn’t recruit someone with less experience,” the worker fired back.

“I’m giving you the reasoning of why two are at different rates,” the woman said. “It’s unfortunate that we changed compensation strategies, but that’s just how we’ve been doing it since.”

“It definitely is unfortunate,” Kaylin said before ending the call.

@kaylin_lavena Being caught up in corporate scandal is uglyyyyy 🆘 #corporatelife #paygap #fyp #blackgirltiktok #scandal #hiring #blackwomen #tiktok #trending ♬ original sound – kaylinlavena

In the comments section, users were upset by the HR representative using corporate jargon to avoid accountability for paying their workers differently.

“This why they don’t want you discussing pay w/ your co workers,” one user wrote.

Some believed the woman sounded like Corporate Erin, a viral internet character played by Lisa Beasley, who was inspired by corporate HR workers.

“I thought this was a skit because the HR person sounds exactly like corporate Erin. Scary,” user Brittany Mason wrote.

“’It’s unfortunate we’ve changed compensation strategies’ ok corporate Erin,” user Cat said.

The Daily Dot reached out to Kaylin Lavena for an update via TikTok comment.

We crawl the web so you don’t have to.
Sign up for the Daily Dot newsletter to get the best and worst of the internet in your inbox every day.
Sign up now for free
Share this article
*First Published: Feb 20, 2024, 1:00 pm CST