The gender wage gap is a reality that cannot be denied.
The Woman Post | Valentina Ibarra
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According to the American Association of University Women, a woman earns 82 cents to every dollar paid to a man. Because of that, women’s social security and pensions are lower, getting 70% of what men do. So, the wage gap affects women in all the stages of their productive life.
Furthermore, the inequality between women is also palpable. For example, Hispanic women earn 55% of the salary of white men, while Asian women get 87%. This means that even as the impact is felt for all women, the ethnic background also matters in how big the wage gap can be. Other aspects are important too, like age, education, and social status (AAWU, 2020).
Because of that, the solution to the wage gap is not an easy one. In 1963, an Equal Pay Act was created to end the wage gap, but more than 50 years later, the problem persists. But even so, public policies and efforts in different industries are being made, and it is important to recognize how this is changing the game for women in the US, even if it is at a slower pace than originally expected.
In California, the Commission for the Status of Women and Girls created a pledge for enterprises to commit to reviewing their promotions, hiring, and paying processes, to accomplish equity within the workplace. While there are some local enterprises, like the Sacramento Municipal Utility District, other big enterprises have joined in the efforts of ending the wage gap. Over 40 companies took the pledge, from technological giants like Apple, Adobe, and Twitter, to diverse industries like Mattel, GAP, and Uber according to the California Equity Pledge.
But it is not only a Californian initiative, as even the US White House created their own Equal Pay Pledge, where more than 100 companies committed to reducing structural barriers that lead to the gender wage gap. And the diversity of industries is notable, from clothing to airlines, with big technological names and food companies, the compromise with reducing the gap seems to be appealing to the most important brands of the US.
But after the compromise, the most important part is the transparency to see if changes are really being made. Just Capital (Insider) tracked 890 companies to see if they analyzed their gender gap procedures and if they published the results. Of the evaluated, only 126 did the gap revision, and only 65 showed their results. Big names from the pledges appear in the list, like Apple, eBay, and Twitter, but show that signing them is not a guarantee to taking action to reduce the gap.
Luckily, there are some companies compromised to eliminating the gender gap. And hopefully, more will join along the way, as it should be a priority for all industries.