By Steffanie Martinez |Staff Writer|
The fact the gender wage gap is still an ongoing issue is a
sad reality of 2016.
On average, women not only earn less than men but they also must work longer for the same amount of pay.
Women are still earning 79 cents to the dollar in comparison to
men, according to the National Partnership for Women & Families.
More specifically, women of color earn even less; they earn 55-to-64 cents to the dollar white men get paid.
“Women are not getting the fair shot that we believe every single American deserves,” stated President Barack Obama on the seventh anniversary of signing the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act.
The Fair Pay Act ensures that those affected by unlawful pay discrimination are able to state their right in a court of law.
This act was signed back in 2009, so why is the gender gap issue still not resolved?
Much has changed since then; there are countless numbers of women doing the same jobs as men, yet their pay does not reflect that.
This past week Obama discussed the new rules that come as part of the Fair Pay Act—rules that will be expected to take effect September of this year.
Companies with more than 100 workers have to provide the government with data of employees’ salaries broken down by sex and race.
It is an exciting move considering it will give transparency to the gender pay gap issue, giving insight into which companies are part of the problem.
However, not everyone is behind the Fair Pay Act.
It is not surprising that some companies would be against this act, considering it would allow their employees the opportunity to file a law suit against them if they feel discriminated against in terms of unequal pay.
Unequal pay can be difficult to talk about. If one finds out that their coworkers earn more or less than you, it can become an uncomfortable situation.
However, some women in the workforce are simply lacking awareness about unfair pay wages.
How can you fight against discrimination you are not aware of?
There are many theories as to why the gender wage gap exists. Those theories include men being more aggressive in terms of moving up, women taking maternity leave, lack of women in certain job fields, among other things.
Regardless of those theories mentioned, women making 55 to 79 cents in comparison to the dollar a man is unacceptable.
Moving forward with the Fair Pay Act will not only give the public perspective of what’s going on, but hopefully encourage companies to hire more women in areas that are lacking, and minimize the wage gap.
As a full time female employee working for a company who puts women in the forefront, I have hope that when I enter the workforce in regards to my career the wage gap won’t be a problem.
There’s no reason why a woman should not be getting paid the same amount of money as a man.
I want to encourage women who are personally affected by the wage gap to feel empowered and speak up.
The government is taking small steps in the right direction, but who better to tackle this issue than women who are actually experiencing it?