Equal Pay Day 2015
Fifty-two years ago, President John F. Kennedy signed the Equal Pay Act of 1963 into law. At that time, women were making a mere 59 cents per dollar that a man made. Although this ratio has since improved, the pay gap is still a long way from being closed. Women now earn 78 cents to every dollar a man makes.
In order to create awareness, Equal Pay Day was created by the National Committee on Pay Equality in 1996. This day represents how far into the year a woman has to work in order to match the amount of money a man made in the previous year. Equal Pay Day falls on Tuesday, April 14 this year.
On this day, we ask you to recognize that women make up nearly half of our nation’s workforce. Women are the primary breadwinners in 4 out of 10 American households with children under 18. Yet, they are still 22 cents underpaid on each dollar a man makes and this number only increases in women of color. African-American women earn 64 cents per dollar that a man makes and Hispanic women earn 55 cents per dollar that a man makes. This means Hispanic women earn 5 cents less than what women earned in 1963 when the Equal Pay Act was created.
If we continue at this slow and steady rate, the pay gap will not close until 2058. That is over four decades from now. It is time to take a stand. The American Association of University Women is asking women to contact members of congress to get them on board with a new piece of legislation: the Paycheck Fairness Act. This act aims to close the loopholes left in the Equal Pay Act of 1963 and, overall, aims to close the wage gap once and for all.
On April 8, The Women’s Fund of Central Ohio will be hosting a panel discussion with local women business owners to explore the pay gap for women and minorities. The panel will feature Pannsy Brown, founder and chief creative officer of Kenbur, Mollie Fankhauser, co-owner of Kittie’s Cakes, Allie Lehman, owner/founder of The Wonder Jam and creative director/co-founder of Death to the Stock Photo, and Lori Kaiser, founder and CEO of Lori Kaiser consulting. We invite you to join us for a night of enlightening discussion and food and drink. Tickets can be purchased here.
Written by Lauren Every, Women’s Fund Intern
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