Morgantown, West Virginia - Join Delegate Barbara Evans Fleischauer in marking Equal Pay Day- the symbolic day when women’s earnings finally catch up to what men earned in the previous calendar year- with an Unhappy Hour at the Wine Bar at Vintner Valley in Morgantown (510 Burroughs Street, Morgantown, WV 26505) from 4-6pm. We will enjoy half-priced wines by the glass and $5 pizzas, as we discuss how to close the gap.
Equal Pay is not only a women’s issue- it’s a family one. Today, women face a pay gap in almost every occupational field. Women account for nearly half of the workforce, but nationally earn only 78 cents to every dollar a man does- even less if you’re an African American or Hispanic.
In West Virginia, the gap is even larger at 67.3 percent! A 2015 study by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, found that women in West Virginia will not reach income equality until 2101. West Virginia ranked second to dead last in IWPR’s analysis of gender earnings ratios in the US.
“West Virginians- young and old, male and female alike- know the value of hard work,” said Fleischauer. “It’s 2015 and it’s time that we start valuing women and men’s work equally.”
As families become more and more reliant on women’s income to make ends meet, one can see how a pay gap of 32.7 percent can quickly add up. For the 40 percent of working mothers who are their families’ sole provider, the pay gap can result in poor living conditions, inadequate nutrition, and significantly fewer opportunities for their children.
The gap is the smallest when a woman enters her career and increases the longer she remains in the workforce. A woman born between 1955 and 1959, who was employed full-time, year-round will lose more than $530,000 in wages across her lifetime. For female college graduates, the losses are far greater. By her 59th birthday, a college-educated woman will have lost nearly $800,000 in wages.
Closing this pay gap and ending pay discrimination is about far more than pride or fairness. When women bring home only 78 percent of what their male counterparts do - it hurts our families, our communities, and our economy.
For more information, visit Institute for Women’s Policy Research Website to access the Institute for Women’s Policy Research full report on The Status of Women in the States: 2015 — Employment and Earnings.