We are a 2-year old startup that was established without any HR policies regarding pay. We still don't have them up until this moment.
Few months ago, my manager "opened up" to me about a colleague, who was the HR manager at that time. That colleague confronted our manager about why people with equal qualifications, job titles, and responsibilites receive different hourly rates. My manager was really mad about it and told me "I have my reasons to do that". That colleague is no longer the HR manager, and now we don't have one at all.
Last month, another junior employee, whose job title is identical to mine, told me he saw my payslip and that his hourly rate is 80% more than me. He asked me why I receive less although my experience is obvious and I'm 1.5 years more senior than him!
Now, my manager (also the owner and the CEO) obviously has strong feelings about this. I feel if I raise the issue with my manager again I will be out of the job entirely. We work on T&M basis, and I think he can do that.
I do need this job, but I feel I must stand out for what is fair and need to have some self-esteem! What would you do if you were in my position?