Fighting for Women's Equality

ERA Launches Close the Gap Campaign for Equal Pay

April 9, 2013 | by
UPDATE: ERA is now seeking video footage to complement the photos you all submitted, to be featured in a short Equal Pay video that will be screened at our annual luncheon. Shoot a 5-10 second video on your smartphone, web cam or tablet on why equal pay is important to you and submit it to cfoster@equalrights.org.

A sample response might go something like this:

“I fight for equal pay because I work just as hard as he does.”

“I’m a waitress, and if my wages were boosted 13% to match the average waiter’s wages, I’d be able to save more money for college.”

“Equal pay matters to me because my mom, sisters and wife deserve a fair share.”

“Your average working woman will lose around half a million dollars to the gender wage gap in her career. With that money, I could buy a home, care for a sick relative, or send my child to a university.”

“Your average woman working full-time who has graduated from college will lose over $1 million to the gender wage gap. With that money, I could retire comfortably after 40 years of hard work.”

“The average woman loses a million dollars over her career to the gender wage gap. With that money, I could buy a home, care for a sick relative, or give back to my community.”

If you need further inspiration for your video, check out this very important report by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research.

Some other startling equal pay facts, which could make for great video segments as well:

It took 44 years (since the passage of the Equal Pay Act) for the wage gap to close just 19 cents. That’s a rate of less than half a penny a year.

If equal pay for women were instituted immediately, across the board, it would result in an annual $319 billion gain nationally for women and their families.

One year after graduating college, women are paid on average only 80 percent of their male counterparts’ wages, and during the next 10 years, women’s wages fall even further behind, dropping to only 69 percent of men’s earnings ten years after college.

 


In furtherance of Equal Rights Advocates’ mission to end pay discrimination, we’ve launched a unique social media campaign to highlight pay inequities profession by profession.

According to data from the Department of Labor, women earn less than men for similar work in nearly all common professions. Some of the pay gaps are startling in their size — women chief executive officers, for example, earn 31 percent less than their male counterparts, on average.

CEO gap

You, ERA supporter, can help us Close the Gap and end pay discrimination by joining those who have already held a sign to protest the gap in one of a variety of professions. Snap a photo with your phone, webcam or camera of you holding the sign, and you’ll have helped us raise awareness about this inequity faced by your mothers, sisters, friends and daughters. Men are welcome to hold signs, too!

To see more photos, and to find out more, visit our Close the Gap Facebook photo album.

close the gap banner

And while you’re at it, show your support for the national Paycheck Fairness Act, which will close loopholes in the Equal Pay Act (now in its 50th year) and bar retaliation against those who disclose their wages to coworkers. Write your local representative or senator and tell them “I Support the PFA!” A sample letter you can use can be downloaded here. You can find contact information for your local congresswoman or congressman here and here. You won’t be alone — check out this letter, co-signed by a wide range of organizations including ERA, in support of the PFA.

5/10 UPDATE: Today, President Barack Obama issued an executive order requiring the federal government examine possible instances of pay inequity within its own workforce. You can read the order here.

 

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