BUILDING WEALTH FOR WOMEN IN CENTRAL OHIO

GENDER AND RACIAL WEALTH GAP, 2019

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The Women’s Fund of Central Ohio is focused on economic empowerment and leadership for women and girls by tackling issues of child care and the benefits cliff;  paid leave; pay equity; and access to comprehensive, medically accurate sex education and contraception. These strategic priority areas drive the  organization’s grantmaking, advocacy, research, partnerships, and education efforts in order to transform the lives of women and girls in central Ohio.  

In  order to create social change for women and girls, we must look at how the gender and racial wealth gap plays a fundamental role in  affecting all women’s potential for economic empowerment and leadership. The gender and racial wealth gap  has intergenerational economic impacts on the lives of girls and women and closing the gender and racial wealth gap is  integral to women’s economic security, good health, and civic and political engagement.  

The report, Assets for Equity: Building Wealth for Women in Central Ohio is the first step in bringing local data to central Ohio to help drive evidence-based solutions to assuring economic prosperity for all. 

WHAT IS THE GENDER AND RACIAL WEALTH GAP?

The  gender wealth gap  refers to how structural sexism compounds and contributes towards the wealth gap, which in turn further exacerbates political, economic, and social disadvantages on the basis of gender. The gender wealth gap includes the gender earnings gap, but far exceeds the gender wage/income gap.   

The  racial wealth gap  refers to how structural racism compounds and contributes to the wealth gap, which in turn further exacerbates political, economic, and social disadvantages to communities of color.  The racial wealth gap,  includes the racial earnings gap, but far exceeds the racial wage/income gap.   

Women of color experience the wealth gap at the intersections of the racial and gender wealth gap.    

WHAT IS THE WEALTH ESCALATOR?

The “wealth escalator,” a term coined by Dr. Mariko Chang, has been defined as a variety of reinforcing financial benefits that help certain individuals accumulate wealth at a faster rate.  Research has shown that women often lack access to “wealth escalator” accelerators which can be: 

  • Homeownership 
  • Education   
  • Employment 
  • Entrepreneurship 
  • Access to credit and loans
  • Access to child savings accounts and 529 savings plans
  • Access to multigenerational supports, such as universal basic income and expanded financial literacy education
  • Expanded eligibility to public benefit programs 

Learn more about barriers and accelerators to wealth over a women’s lifetime and view a glossary of terms with this snapshot, click here.

Read the full report.

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The Women’s Fund of Central Ohio is grateful for the financial support of the following partners, who have helped make this report possible: