The Gender Pay Gap Is Bad But Worse for Women of Color

By | March 12, 2013

A recent Time article titled “The Pay Gap Is Not as Bad as You (and Sheryl Sandberg) Think” suggests that women are either somehow at fault or to blame for earning less than a male for the same job with the same skills, citing that women make poor career choices– choosing jobs that pay less than ones selected by men. Women on average earn less than men for comparable jobs — 77 cents in 2012 for every dollar a man earns. Past studies account for job choices and compare similar jobs in citing the pay differences between men and women. The reason that women are paid less than a man for equal work and experience is discriminatory and for no other reason. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, women’s salaries are outpaced by men almost everywhere from the highest paying occupations to the lowest paying occupations. Everywhere from doctors and lawyers to cashiers and lesser positions, women earn less than their male counterparts.

Even more disturbing in the pay equity debate is the fact that women of color earn even less than their white counterparts. Time ‘s article fails to discuss that women of color are at an even greater disadvantage in terms of pay equity. African-American women earn 64 cents to the dollar of what men earn. And Hispanic women make only 55 cents to every dollar a white, non-Hispanic man earns. The focus should be on those at the bottom of the ladder and not the ones with a college education. The loss in income for all women due to the pay gap means less money to support a family, with housing, food, education and health care. But for women of color, closing the pay gap is of even greater importance. (Huffington Post)

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