Equal Pay

What is Equal Pay Day?

Equal Pay Day is the day designated to represent the amount of time it takes women to catch up to a white man’s earnings from the previous year. While April 10th may be recognized as Equal Pay Day in 2018, it is only part of the story. Women of color face even greater wage gap disparities as compared to white men. Using the most recent data available:

  • The average woman earns 80 cents for every $1 white man earns, which means they must work 15 months to earn what men earns in 12 months.
  • While 80 cents on the dollar is reflective of women on average, different demographics of women experience a much larger wage gap.
  • African American women earn 63 cents on the $1 of White, non-Hispanic men, Native American Women earn 57 cents, Latinas earn 54 cents, and while the average statistic for Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) women is 87 cents, AAPI women experience some of the widest within ethnicity wage gaps – some as large as two years.
  • Over an average 40-year career, this can cost a woman and her family between $400,000 and more than a $1 million dollars.

What is the Paycheck Fairness Act?

The Paycheck Fairness Act was introduced in Congress on April 4th, 2017, as it has been in the last several years. The bill has not been brought to the floor for a vote.

  • The proposed legislation updates and strengthens previous versions of fair pay legislation by including a section prohibiting employers from using prior salary as the sole reason for any disparity in compensation.
  • This means women will be paid based on the job requirements and their qualifications, not what they were paid in the past, which may reflect longstanding gender-based and race-based wage disparities.
  • But that’s not all – this bill also bans retaliation against workers who discuss their wages, closes loopholes, and more. All of these policy changes help shrink the wage gap between men and women – as well as closing the gap between different demographics of women.
  • Beware of other bills claiming to fix the pay gap – the Paycheck Fairness Act is the only bill that brings us closer to fair wages for all. Other bills fall short of helping to ensure that women receive fair pay.

Where can I learn more?

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