The National Committee on Pay Equality named Tuesday, April 14, 2015 Equal Pay Day in an effort to call attention to the inequitable pay gaps that still exist between female and male workers. Each year the organization selects a day to commemorate individuals who are making strides towards pay equality and influence business owners to examine their own wage policies.
Pay Comparisons Through the Years
- In 1963, women generally made 59 cents for every dollar made by men.
- President John F. Kennedy signed the Equal pay Act into law.
- In 2013, women generally made 78 cents for every dollar made my men.
- In 2014, women generally made 82.5 percent for every dollar made by men, according to Institute for Women’s Policy Research.
Though it appears that the gap is steadily closing, analysts say that progress slowed substantially over the last decade.
- Men earn more than their female counterparts at every income level.
- At the highest income levels, the gap is considerably larger with women in the 95th income percentile earning 79% less than their male counterparts.
- Even at the lowest income levels, where minimum wage is the basic gauge, women earn 91 cents for every dollar earned by their male counterparts.
- Among college graduates, women statistically earn 80% of the what males earn.
- Among workers with advanced degrees, women statistically earn 74% of what males earn.
Organizers of Equal Pay Day ask supporters to wear red symbolizing that women and minorities are “in the red” when it comes to equal pay. Across the country, women-owned businesses, civil rights groups and labor organizations participate in local activities to raise awareness about the issue. Pending legislation in the federal government has not been successful in Congress.