Equal Pay Day is coming on March 15. The day represents how long into 2022 the average woman in the U.S. has to work to have been paid as much since January 1, 2021, as the average man was paid in 2021. March 15 is the day we observe Equal Pay Day for women of all races, but for Black and Latina and Native women, the date comes much later—and more so this year, following a recalculation based on pandemic-era employment patterns that pushed many women out of full-time work.
While pay inequity declined between 1979 and 1994, that was largely because of men’s stagnating wages rather than women’s rising ones, the Economic Policy Institute’s Elise Gould writes, and it has barely budged since then. And it’s despite the fact that, since 1994, women’s educational achievement has outpaced men’s. Now, “Women with advanced degrees are paid less, on average, than men with bachelor’s degrees.”
Equal pay is about women’s lives—about whether they can pay the bills and feed their families and have a little space for rest or joy. It’s also about power—whether women can walk away from an abusive or simply unhappy relationship, whether they can fight workplace harassment and abuse. And when we think about unequal pay, it’s always important to remember that unions are one of the most important ways to increase pay equity. That’s why Union Women Equal Pay Day came a month ago.
● The Major League Baseball lockout is over after an agreement was reached. As a reminder, lockouts are owner-initiated attempts to break workers and unions.
● At Belabored, Sarah Jaffe talked about teachers’ strikes, including the current one in Minneapolis.
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