Equal Pay Day represents the approximate extra days that women in the United States must work to reach pay equity with their male counterparts. In total, women must work an additional four months annually, resulting in millions of lost wages over the course of a lifetime.
Arguably at no other time in recent history have we seen such focus and priority placed on addressing the challenges, obstacles, and inequality that exist for women nationally and globally. Yet during this time, we have also seen the recent halt of provisions of the Fair Pay Act named in honor of activist Lilly Ledbetter designed to ensure transparency and accountability of equal pay for federal contracts. Despite this federal change, we have seen private sector companies such as Starbucks, Apple and Nike make considerable efforts to ensure gender wage parity for all employee.
Further, we have also seen recent studies that show that women who have children before 25 or after 35 show great promise in closing the gender gap.
But where do women of color stand in the fight for equality? Many months behind.
Black women’s equal pay day (63 cents to the dollar) will not be achieved until July, Native American women (59 cents to the dollar) will not see equal pay until September, and lastly, Hispanic women (54 cents to the dollar) will not achieve parity until November.
Walker’s Legacy is on a mission to combat this disparity with our mission to equip, inspire, and engage the promising community of entrepreneurial and professional multicultural women. We know that when we empower women, we continue to create spaces of equity and opportunity.
In closing, solving for equal pay day will require an equal willingness to solve for and understand the challenges that also face women of color.