Black Women’s Equal Pay Day:
One year’s salary. 20 months of work.
Few people could work for free, Monday to Friday, for over eight months of the year. So it may surprise you to learn that women across America have essentially been doing just that, but not through choice.
About Black Women’s Equal Pay Day 2020
According to Pay Scale’s global Gender Pay Gap Report, women make $0.81 for every dollar a man makes ($0.82 for women in the US). This means that they must work significantly more days until they receive the same pay as men. In essence, during these additional days, they’re working for free.
Women’s Equal Pay Day marks the day on which the average full-time working woman finally makes the same amount of money that the average man did in the previous year. While this date landed on March 31st this year, Black Women’s Equal Pay Day has only just arrived today: August 13th.
This means that eight months into the year, on average, Black women have only just made the same amount as men did last year. That’s 20 months of full-time work for one year’s salary.
But wait. What about the Equal Pay Act?
Yes, federal laws such as the Equal Pay Act and Civil Rights mean that women are to be paid the same amount for performing the same role as a man. However, there are still social constructs, biases, and barriers preventing women from reaching higher paid positions and truly achieving equality. And the figures make it clear that these barriers are even greater for Black women:
Barriers associated with traditional gender roles and our continuing legacy of slavery have devalued women and people of color, particularly Black people, denying them higher-paying jobs, fair treatment, and opportunities for advancement in the workplace.
Terry Fromson, Managing Attorney, Women’s Law Project
Equal Pay Today also tells us that 80% of Black mothers are the breadwinners of the household, which means the significant pay gap is affecting families. This knowledge becomes even more concerning during the current pandemic, in which the economic fallout and job cuts are said to be falling hardest on women of color.
Play your part in Black Women's Equal Pay Day
If this trajectory continues, the Institute for Women’s Policy Research projects that Black women will have to wait until 2124 for equal pay.
With no time to wait, you may be wondering what steps you can take to start making a positive impact. One of the many great places to start is by reading this insightful CNBC Make It article in which five Black women explain how both employers and colleagues can help close the pay gap.
Why not also follow Equal Pay Today on Instagram or Facebook to find more information and join today’s equal pay campaigns — and campaigns for upcoming future Equal Pay Days — including social media storms that raise awareness of the pay gap issue across America.
Equal Pay Day calendar
Here are this year’s Equal Pay Day dates to look out for, based on the 2019 U.S. Census data on median earnings for full-time, year-round workers:
AAPI Women’s Equal Pay Day 2020: February 11th
Equal Pay Day 2020: March 31st
Mom’s Equal Pay Day 2020: June 4th
Black Women’s Equal Pay Day 2020: August 13th
Native Women’s Equal Pay Day 2020: October 1st
Latina Equal Pay Day 2020: October 29th
Support the cause by using the hashtags: #BlackWomensEqualPay and #OwnYourPower2020
For employers looking for guidance on how they can help ensure their workplace is one in which every woman can thrive, remember that WORK180 is here to help.
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About the author
To help women find a workplace that will work for them, we prescreen employers on flexible working, parental support policies, PTO and their focus on pay equity, and more. Find your next role on the WORK180 job board.