With the price of college rising, many students are worried about their job prospects in terms of income. According to data from the American Community Survey, in 2014, women in Illinois were reported to make 79 percent of what men made.
Many women, including myself, find this news disheartening to hear. Unfortunately, for some women, it’s actually much worse.
These statistics generalize women into one category. In reality, the gap varies depending on a woman’s background and ethnicity.
According to American Association of University Women, African American, Hispanic, Native American, and Native Hawaiian women face much lower annual income than the reported 79 percent.
“The gap was largest for Hispanic and Latina women, who were paid only 54 percent of what white men were paid in 2014.” http://bit.ly/1baHZaW
Even this year, things have not gotten much better. Aug. 23, 2016 is African American Women’s Equal Pay Day, according to a Huffington Post article which can be read here: http://huff.to/2bBb7fx. This is the day when African American women, who earn 63 percent of what white men do, catch up to white men’s pay from last year.
It takes eight long months just to reach that amount. The National Women’s Law Center revealed that over the span of a 40 year career, an African American woman will lose an average of $877,480 compared to the career of a white man.
Obviously, this is unacceptable. Yet there are still people that insist that the wage gap is simply a myth. The common argument is that women simply choose to work in fields that pay less.
However, these wage gaps occur with almost every single occupation, whether it be surgeon, lawyer, or teacher. Even women who achieve a higher level education still face a substantial gap in their pay.
Equal pay is a right that every woman deserves. If you want to create a change, share the facts about equal pay.
The more people that know the truth, the easier it will be to fix this problem. You can also urge Congress to raise the minimum wage, which will help close the wide wage gap that exists for women and especially women of color. American Association of University Women has a website that simplifies this process, which can be found here: http://bit.ly/1PZVNFw