The Pay Gap Is Severely Affecting Black Women, Yet Only 1 In 3 Americans Know It

It took eight months and seven days into 2018 for black women to catch up to what white men earned in 2017. That means it takes a little more than 19 months for black women to reach a year’s worth of the average white man’s salary.

To highlight that discrepancy, organizations including Equal Pay Today and Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In are promoting Tuesday, Aug. 7, as Black Women’s Equal Pay Day. Black women are only paid 63 cents for every dollar white men earn. Black women, on average, are paid 38 percent less than than white men and 21 percent less than white women. Pay disparities remain consistent across different levels of education, according to the Economic Policy Institute. That’s a big difference, especially when 80 percent of black mothers are the primary breadwinners for their families.

“Equal pay is not about getting what’s fair, but about getting compensated for the value and expertise we bring to the workplace,” said Lisa Skeete Tatum, CEO and founder of career guidance platform Landit. “When women are not fully compensated, there is the real risk of not getting what they deserve, but also not being able to ever close the gap. The loss is not only in terms of compensation, but also promotion, learning opportunities and the ability to bring the full measure of their talent and potential to the table.”

That gap has only narrowed by 9 cents over the last 30 years, compared to 22 cents for white women, Pew Research Center reported in 2016. On top of that, black women receive less support from managers and get promoted less frequently, according to Lean In’s 2017 Women In the Workplace study

This is an urgent issue that is costing black women more than $800,000 ― and, in some states, $1 million ― over a lifetime. 


Read more at The Huffington Post

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07 Aug 2018

By Taryn Finley