An employer who violates the provisions of section 8-5-102 is liable in an amount equal to the difference between the amount which he paid to the complaining employee and the amount which the employee would have received had there been no discrimination; and, if the director finds that such discrimination was willful, the director may impose a penalty upon the employer in addition thereto of not more than the amount of such difference. The amount of such liability so determined by the director shall constitute the award of the director. Such award shall be the property of the employee but may be recovered for the employee in a suit brought by the director in his name in any court in the county of the residence of the employer within this state having jurisdiction of the amount of the demand in the suit. The director may join in one suit all of his awards against any one employer under this article.
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